By: Lloyd M’bwana
The establishment of the Poverty Dynamic Australia in Malawi is expected to address poverty from the grassroots up and inspire a movement for change using the principles of community organisation with the top-down approach.
Poverty Dynamics in the country tends to pioneer grassroots and community based projects in various thematic areas including health, environment, education, water and sanitation, economic empowerment for children and other margalised groups.
The program tends to be piloted at shanty town of Mtsiliza on the outskirts of the Capital Lilongwe which will enable residents deciding their own needs and how best can walk out of that with support from various sponsors which Poverty Dynamics expects to bring along.
Speaking in an inclusive interview with the Maravi Post on Wednesday, November 15 after the launch of the organisation in the capital Lilongwe, Poverty Dynamics Malawi’s Board Chairperson, Professor David Boston Kamchacha emphasized the need for communities identifying their own challenges with support from external forces for sustainability of the project.
Professor Kamchaka observed that some communities in cities are living in deep poverty which can be eradicated when the owners put across their challenges to donor partners for an appropriate approach than organisation imposing projects to people.
“It high time organisation could move away from top up to bottom approach when addressing poverty levels. When communities identify their own challenges, solutions are also vested in them such that developmental partners and donors are there with technical and financial support.
“This is the reason, Dynamic Poverty Malawi is launched to spearhead the bottom approach that whatever is implemented on the ground is sustainable. We are here to stay by changing people’s attitude on developmental agendas.
“Currently, the program is being piloted at Mtsiliza, one of the impoverished townships in the capital Lilongwe before its spread to other parts of the country. We believe the area will give us much work and experience on how best locals can move out from poverty by their own solutions”, assures Professor Kamchaka.
Echoing on the same, Bernie Pigdon, Poverty Dynamics Australia Board Chairperson observed that many countries and people groups show grassroots change, nurtured through the activity and relationships of a local community organizer, brings about a better quality of life for those previously trapped in the cycle of extreme poverty.
“Experience has shown that grassroots community organisation in urban slums, squatter settlement, shanty towns and informal settlements across the globe evidences this approach to poverty alleviation is philosophical sound, practical, doable, inexpensive, cost-effective, replicable, scalable and sustainable”, said Pigdon.
Later, the Maravi Post caught up with Patrick Kabambe Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Labour, Manpower and Development on prospects of the organisation inception in Malawi, saying the programs must include young people who are in majority.
Kabambe said the launch of the organisation should address unemployment levels among the youths in a bid to move them from objective poverty with social-economic empowerment programmes.