Tools for Self Reliance supports organisations that are improving the lives of street children in Blantyre, Malawi. Young men like Davie. Here’s his amazing story.
Davie (19) told us about the help he received at the Samaritan Trust’s vocational skills development centre on Chikwawa Road and how it turned his life around.
When I was 16 home life was bad. I didn’t have school necessities and I went days without food. I was also beaten by several members of my family.
Things were so bad that Davie ran away from home. He suffered intimidation and abuse on the streets of Blantyre where he slept rough for six months. He just about scraped together a living from piece-work and begging.
I offered to guard people’s cars and earned a bit of money this way. The beatings continued. My friends were at school. I wondered if I’d die without getting an education. My future was not good.
Then Davie had a lucky break. An outreach worker found him and offered him the chance of a different life which Davie was quick to grasp. At the start things were tough, as all Davie had known were violence and threats. But slowly he learnt about relationships and mutual respect. He learnt about the dangers of HIV/AIDS and how to reduce the risks to himself and others. He acquired a new set of skills in carpentry and was given his own Tools for Self Reliance toolkit which he now uses to repair and make furniture. And what’s more, with the Samaritan Trust’s help Davie was able to patch things up at home and return to live with his family.
Davie is now optimistic about the future. With his new-found skills, tools and self-confidence he’s now got another chance – one he fully intends to take.
My life has really improved. I don’t see any challenges I can’t overcome.