skip to Main Content
How We Work Determined to Develop Malawi

At Determined to Develop (D2D), we take a collaborative approach to our work, and believe that those who live in the area are best able to assess needs and create solutions for the community. We do not impose what we think should be solutions from the top-down, but rather work with community members from the ground-up. Our commitment to collaboration allows us to maximize impact and assist in the development of Chilumba in a responsible and positive way.

All our projects have community ownership, which is demonstrated in two ways:

First, communities are enlisted to identify their needs and solutions, which becomes the basis of our work. We participate in regular village needs assessment meetings attended by Village Headmen (chiefs), local village development committees, women’s groups, civil society leaders, and other community members. It is from these meetings that the concept, planning, and implementation stages of any of our projects begin. Furthermore, all work is vetted by community stakeholders.

Second, communities contribute to the running of each project. Our approach emphasizes the personal responsibility and accountability of all partners involved. This grassroots model for development utilizes local knowledge and ensures that we work in collaboration with traditional leaders and community-based networks, respecting cultural values and traditions. This process is assisted by the community liaison officer, who ensures that we stay fully engaged with everything taking place in the villages and vice versa.

We have expanded our programming, but maintain our focus on a relatively small geographic area of Chilumba, Malawi. Remaining a local organization has a number of benefits. We have developed a strong rapport with stakeholders in the area, which helps us to run our many projects effectively. Working on the ground also allows us to have close and on-going monitoring of all projects, and we pride ourselves on being able to adapt projects where necessary and learn through evaluation. This approach also ensures that all money donated is used in the most cost-effective way, as we have minimal overhead costs.

As a development organization, it is important to us that our initiatives are in-line with those of broader development strategies, both in the national and international context. These strategies include the Karonga District Development Plan, Malawi Growth and Development Strategy III, and the United Nation’s Standard Development Goals. Each of these strategies includes specific actions for improved youth education. By aligning our programs with the initiatives in these development strategies, we ensure that our programs are following the best fit for the development of Malawi.

Learn more about how D2D works by clicking below:

Determined to Develop Malawi Back to School

Back to School

Before the start of each and every term, D2D organizes a youth workshop designed to gear up the sponsored youths as they are going back to school. For more than six hours all the sponsored youths gather in the pavilion to listen to different topics and advices that are prepared by the D2D staff member, and also to talk to one another about how they are preparing for their new term. This year was no different as over 180 sponsored youths came for the workshop.
A number of lessons were planned to be delivered to the sponsored youth, such as lessons about being a positive initiator, being responsible, managing upkeep at school, and about being able to stand up for oneself.

The workshop also included a long career talk from Frackson Mhango, an alumni of D2D’s Residential Youth Program. Frackson obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Social Science: Human Rights, at the University of Livingstonia in 2017 and now works with the Karonga District Council’s Department of Youth. His work revolves around motivating young people to take a stand in the development of the country.

Frackson introduced his career talk by reminding the sponsored youth that not long ago he was sitting on the very same chair where they were sitting, listening to different talks which motivated him to be where he is now. He then encouraged the youth to work hard for them to pursue their dreams. He further emphasized on the importance of pursuing vocational courses, such as brick laying, carpentry and joinery, and electrical installation and plumbing. At the end of the day students were given a chance to explain some important things that they got from the workshop and everyone was in top spirits to return to school. We wish all of our sponsored youth a great term and we look forward to our next workshop in August.