BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)-Malawi on Friday celebrated the 2023 International Literacy Day (ILD) in style by promoting local manufacturing talent of the tailors that are beneficiaries of Prison Education Project (PEP) at Zomba Central Prison and the Community Learning Centres (CLCs) in the Malawi’s districts of Dowa and Ntchisi.
The event which attracted various stakeholders in the Adult Learning and Education (ALE) sector took place at Mdeka in Blantyre.
Shifting from the annual event’s tradition of wearing imported T-shirts, the attendees wore shirts that were made by inmates at Zomba Central Prison and local tailors in Ntchisi and Dowa districts.
The wear was produced under PEP and CLCs.
The PEP is being implemented by DVV International in collaboration with the Centre for Human Rights Education Advice and Assistance (CHREAA) and Malawi Prisons Service (MPS); while CLCs are being implemented by DVV International in collaboration with the National Centre for Adult Literacy and Education (NACLAE), a department under the Ministry of Gender, Community Development and Social Welfare (MoGCDSW).
Minister of MoGCDSW, Jean Sendeza, who was the guest of honor at the event said the promotion of local products through tailoring and other skills is vital for economic development.
“I’m impressed to see people wearing shirts which were made by local artisans. This is the way to go as far as empowering communities is concerned.
“Supporting local tailors provides employment opportunities within the community. This can help reduce unemployment rates and contribute to the overall economic well-being of the area. Importing clothes often involves costs such as shipping, tariffs, and import duties,” Minister said.
She added, “By sourcing locally, these costs are minimized or eliminated, potentially reducing the overall cost of clothing production. Furthermore, local tailors can provide customized clothing that meets the specific needs and preferences of customers.
“This can lead to higher customer satisfaction and loyalty, as people appreciate having unique and well-fitting garments”.
Sendeza said many Malawians have the potential to contribute to the national economy and they should be given a platform like the way tailors were treated during the 2023 ILD.
She, therefore, urged organizations to trust skillful local people to make and supply items on the market.
Sendza also commended various organizations that came together to develop the National Policy and the Strategic Plan for ALE.
The policy was approved in 2020 while the Strategic Plan was approved in 2022 by the Malawi Government.
Both documents will officially be launched in October this year at what is expected to be a colorful event.
Sendeza urged the stakeholders to read the two documents so that they easily align their development projects to ALE as the country forges ahead towards Malawi Vision 2023.
“I should salute all the organizations which made this achievement possible. I should also particularly thank DVV International for providing financial support towards this initiative. Let us access the copy for our offices. Let us read these two documents,” said Sendeza.
During the celebration, DVV International announced the introduction of a photo competition regarding ALE.
DVV International called on individuals and organizations to submit any best photo that portrays ALE.
“This can be a photo by a camera or a drawing,” said DVV International Communications/Programme Officer Dyson Mthawanji during the event.
The ILD celebrations rotate in regions in terms of venue.
In 2021, the event took place in Rumphi while in 2022, all roads led to Balaka.
The 2024 event will take place in one of the central region districts.
This year’s theme was ‘Promoting literacy for a world in transition: Building the foundation for sustainable and peaceful societies