Letter From a Nursing Degree Graduate to FOCHTA’s Patron

Hello Papa Claude

Greetings from Malawi. I am Keith Mwitiwa, now 26 years old, and was a long time beneficiary of FOCHTA (once a FOCHTA beneficiary always a FOCHTA beneficiary). I am so proud of it and thankful to your vision. I graduated from University of Malawi (Kamuzu college of Nursing) in October 2015 with a Bachelor of Science degree (nursing and midwifery), two years after Brenda. At that time life was hard because there was a crisis in government which stopped straight deployment of graduates to jobs, as was done before. So living in a country where experience is the only thing that matters to secure a job, I really struggled. Then I organized myself and thought of volunteering at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital, a big learning and referral centre in Blantyre. Volunteering here is another thing; sometimes it’s purely without benefit and at times with some stipend. In my case it had a small stipend for just soap, but the problem was it could take 2 or 3 months for me to get a monthly stipend. Living in town on a rented room with friends, whereby at every month-end we were supposed to pay for the sharing of rent and food. This was just too hard.

So I decided to search for a non-governmental organization where I could volunteer and luckily I found one, The Global AIDS Interfaith Alliance (GAIA) in Mulanje District. So I moved to that district and was working to provide out-patient services, family planning and HIV/AIDS care. Life started changing because I had an improved stipend which was given to me monthly. But still this wasn’t enough because I was paying school fees for my young brother and sister so the stipend was only enough for my daily basic expenses. I kept on applying for different jobs and lucky enough got a job with Malawi AIDS Counselling and Resource Organisation (MACRO). There I am working on a project called “Gateway Project; addressing the unmet needs on HIV/AIDS in Blantyre”. I enjoy my job very much because it was my passion to work in HIV /AIDS fighting institutions.

The only challenge I have with this job is the contract they provide. The contract is always a short one with uncertain renewals, depending on whether MACRO can have enough funding. So at every end of contract, I worry a lot. But by grace, funding does come miraculously as many donors like our work. Am not married yet but I have a longtime girlfriend, Caroline, who I am planning to marry to on December 1st, 2018 at Kanjedza Lodge in Limbe, Blantyre. All in all, life is fair to me. 

With all the best wishes to you.

Keith

Posted on: Thursday, 20 September 2018 at: 7:30 am
Filed under: Malawi news