Matt Maroon is a 2006 graduate of the University of Dayton, USA who before heading to law school decided to undertake a year of service. He contacted the Marianist brothers, who are also the proprietors of the University of Dayton, and set up an independent program in Malawi. One year turned into many.
From 2006 to 2008, during his time with the Marianists, Matt served as Chief Financial Officer and Acting Director of Miracle Technical College for Orphans. Concurrently, he taught secondary school social studies and biology at Chaminade Boarding School and was in charge of a Women’s Empowerment Program which allocated micro-credit loans to widows and orphans. During the hunger months, Matt managed a grain distribution program in rural Malawi which provided sustenance to over 1500 families who would have otherwise risked starvation.
Following work on his master’s degree at the University of Cincinnati (2008-9) in Cultural and Applied Anthropology, where he also worked full time as a live-in residential house parent in a group home for inner-city boys, Matt returned to Malawi and established a lodge called Maji Zuwa, which means “water and sun” in the local language, Tumbuka. Maji Zuwa is a community hub where visitors and local people can come together to work on development projects. Matt also founded the non-profit organization Determined to Develop in order to support the development work of surrounding villages and Malawi as a whole.
As well as the Executive Director of Determined to Develo, Matt also cares for more than forty-three orphans full time. In recognition of his work and collaborative spirit, Matt has been inducted by traditional leaders as a chief in the Mwakhwawa clan.
Within Malawi, aside from his work with Maji Zuwa and Determined to Develop, Matt is also the country manager for Lattitude Global Volunteering, a UK based charity which provides service opportunities for young people to teach in secondary schools within Malawi. Matt also formerly lectured at the University of Livingstonia where he held the post of Dean of the College of Social Sciences.