Wongani & Waliko, our newest Determined to Develop sponsored youth and identical twins joined us last month and now stay together with the other sponsored youth at Maji Zuwa. They were born in 2002 and, like many children in Malawi, both of their parents passed away at a very young age; first their father when they were 10 months old and then their mother a year later.
At that time, they began staying with their aunt but she, her own children, and the twins were all chased from their land by their father’s relatives because their father had died. After finding a cleaning job, their aunt managed to rent a house for two years. However, in 2005 she fell sick with tuberculosis and high blood pressure. Weak and unable to work, her condition began to get worse. The family went to live with another aunt; old and divorced, caring for her sick sister as well as the children. In that house, there has never been enough to care for everyone.
Wongani and Waliko completed primary (elementary) school last year and were both accepted to continue secondary education at Khwawa Community Day Secondary School. While staying with their old aunt, they were walking 8 miles each way to school and back because there was no money to pay for transport. There was also no money to pay the school fees. After two weeks the twins were chased from school. After selling goats and the cassava meant for the family’s food, they could still not square the balance in the time given by the school and they were told to stop altogether.
This is when a neighborr referred them to D2D to explain their problems. After hearing about the situation and consulting the chief, the twins were taken on board at Maji Zuwa where they share similar stories with the other boys. They are now taken care of and can relax and concentrate on learning at school since they no longer have to worry about where their school fees will come from or from where their next meal will be sourced. The twins are the newest members of the family here, and since their arrival around a month ago, have been settling into life in a new environment. D2D wanted to share the story of these brave and intelligent boys, and help the rest of the world to get to know the new twins on the block! Currently, Wongani and Waliko do not have a sponsor and Determined to Develop is searching for anyone who might have the willingness to ensure these boys finish their education despite the cards they were dealt. If you’re interested and able, please email us by clicking here firstname.lastname@example.org.
D2D: Hi boys! Everyone at Maji Zuwa has a favorite football team. What team do you support?
Wongani: I support Real Madrid and my favorite player is Christiano Ronaldo! I like playing striker when we play football on the beach. Football is my favorite pastime.
Waliko: My favorite team is Barcelona, which means that me and my brother sometimes argue over which team is better. I also like being the striker too so when me and my brother play we always play on different teams. My favorite player is Messi! He is the best.
D2D: I know you are both in Form 1 together, how are you doing in school?
Wongani: Waliko is the best at English, he is very good and better than me so he can help me. But when it comes to mathematics we are both good at it because we like problem solving.
Waliko: I scored 84% at English and Wongani was just behind me with 79% so he is not that bad! He is much better at history though because he got 97% in the exams and is the best in the class. My favorite subjects are Physical Science and English and Mathematics but not Chichewa because I am not very good at it.
D2D: Wow, well done boys! So what do you like to do outside of school?
Wongani: My favorite things to do is play chess because I am good at it and I like solving problems.
Waliko: I like reading books. At Maji Zuwa there is a lot of books in our library so I like to try and read as many as I can because I love the short stories.
D2D: So what about when you leave school… What do you aspire to be one day?
Wongani: I want to be the manager of a bank, so that one day I can help my family with money. Being a bank manager is a good job and because I am good at mathematics. I will be good at it and enjoy working there.
Waliko: I want to be an engineer. If you are an engineer, you might get to be a boss and you will have responsibilities. I like fixing and making things so if I get to be an engineer I will enjoy the work and can fix cars and motorbikes.
D2D: Great aspirations! Can you tell us your favorite thing about living at Maji Zuwa?
Wongani: My favorite thing about being at Maji Zuwa is the library. I love the library here because I can read as many short stories as I like and when I am finished I can pick up a new one. Its great because I have read about so many different stories since being here and there are more I want to read too! Playing chess and football are my other favorite things about being here.
Waliko: I love playing football with all of my friends down at the lake shore. I can be like Messi, my favorite player, and score loads of goals against the opposite team! That is my favorite thing other than that we get a chance to finish our education.
D2D: What is the best thing about having a twin?
Wongani: Because we are identical people get us mixed up a lot. Once I didn’t sweep my room and was going to get yelled at so I pretended that I was Waliko!
Waliko: I never knew that! But the best thing about having a twin is that we can always help each other and solve practical problems together. There is nothing bad about being twins.
D2D: Sounds like you guys get up to lots of fun! If you could have one wish granted, what would it be?
Wongani: I would get a motorbike and ride it to cool new places.
Waliko: I want to have a car so that one day I can use it to drive all the way to America!
D2D: Since you guys look identical, what are the differences between you both?
Wongani: I am the loudest and Waliko is quiet. And although we both write with the same hand, I am left footed and Waliko is right footed.
Waliko: I don’t know how to play chess very well but Wongani is so good at it. Wongani is right, I am the quieter one. But the best way to tell us apart it that I have one tooth missing, so everyone always asks me to smile really big when they can’t tell the difference. If the find a tooth missing, they know that I am Waliko!
D2D: What other similarities do you have, besides your looks?
Wongani: Our height, age and parents! We also both love eating chicken.
Tawonga chomene (We thank you)!