In this blog we set the scene going into 2017, following the journey to becoming a sustainable charity & what that means, then further down the page is an interview with Jammo from My Ny Leng, a breakthrough act involved in Beating Heart Malawi, who’ve been supporting LSU in new & incredible ways ways. There’s also a list of super FUNdraising events happening in February surround Valentines, from amazing partner promoters Junkyard Golf, Artful Badger & Love Disco. So don’t go getting distracted or you might miss something! Tiger Lily x
“Give a man a fish and feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish and feed him for a lifetime”…
Love Support Unite has built a sustainable charity model to empower communities in Malawi towards self-sufficiency, through projects involving education, enterprise, equality, health, & permaculture. We want to share with you how we are working with these ‘foundations for the future’ are gradually to break the cycle of poverty, forming a holistic model which we hope to inspire other developing communities and NGOs to use.
The cycle of poverty is a ‘set of factors or events by which poverty, once started, is likely to continue unless there is outside intervention’, usually involving a lack of opportunity, resources and education, disease, environmental disaster, government policy and the economy. Rather than providing aid, LSU makes a lasting impact through sustainable resources and infrastructure, skills and employment, dedicating its efforts to helping communities in Malawi, one of the most densely populated and least developed countries in the world with:
– the world’s 9th highest level of HIV/AIDs – 35% illiteracy – a school-life expectancy of 11yrs old – 26% of children engaged in labour – 90% of the population economically dependent on the other 10% – around 52% of the population living on less than 30p a day – an economy dependent on a struggling agricultural industry – and a 3-month ‘hungry season’, bringing famine to around 6.5million people this year, due to agricultural techniques and an annual growing season.
“With Nutrition there can be Education, with Education there can be Nutrition”…
In 2016 LSU saw the success of the Grow to Grow sustainable farming project, which used the principles of permaculture to cultivate the poor, sandy soil of the surrounding land at Mkunkhu School – the first ‘Sustainable School’ in Malawi, where LSU has provided on-site teacher housing, solar panels & a peer-to-peer teacher training program.
The first Grow to Grow harvest produced enough moringa plants, cassava, sweet potato and staple crops, to feed the 600 pupils throughout the ‘hungry season’, when children would go for as long as 4 days without food, and surplus crops also generated enough profits to help make the school and farm self-sufficient. You can read more in this previous blog
LSU also built a school kitchen and outdoor classroom, where permaculture and nutrition are taught as food is unearthed, cooked and served. Successfully reducing the effect of famine on attendance and learning, whilst demonstrating sustainable farming to the community; in the first term since the kitchen was opened, attendance rose by 30%.
“50% of Malawians suffer from stunted growth; if a child under 5 suffers from malnutrition, they will never recover…”
LSU also launched a new Grow to Grow initiative at the end of 2016, providing 10 vulnerable families with Sustainable Famine Relief, to ensure their survival during this hungry season and those to come. Families were given farming materials & permaculture training, with which they can produce a sustainable food supply from their land, as well as a care package for immediate relief. Meet the happy beneficiaries…
Grow to Grow also provided the women of Education, Enterprise & Empowerment Initiatives mother and baby enterprise initiative with land, resources and training so that they too have a sustainable food supply, an incentive now attached to the co-operative start-up project that follows the 6-week baby massage course.
In 2017 the Mukunkhu School farm will be extended to 10 hectares, to include a drip irrigation system provided by the affiliate Garden to Mouth project, funded by the Beating Heart album, to provide nutritious meals all year round. The Teach to Teach project will also be reintroduced at the school, whilst LSU plans to extend Sustainable Famine Relief to twice as many families and introduce Grow to Grow to Tilinanu Orphanage, also set to receive solar power, helping it to become self-sufficient. The Medical Outreach project will begin to focus more on family planning and sex education in order to combat Malawi’s expanding population and the spread of HIV/Aids amongst younger people; whilst treatment is becoming more prevalent, prevention sadly isn’t.
Without YOU none of this is possible. Together we can be the change.
We raise money to develop and maintain projects through our incredible community of donors, fundraisers, musicians, festivals & events, partners, and everyone who donates and buys Love Specs or other LSU creations.
We’d like to thank all of you who helped us to improve lives in Malawi… You Are Love!
“We want to show other promoters and DJs that they’re able to use their platforms for supporting charities, that music can bring people together in the clubs and around the world”
This month we’re putting the spotlight on My Nu Leng, who have been incredible supporters of LSU this last year, collaborating on the Beating Heart record, donating gig fees, and are donating £1 of every ticket sold on their upcoming My Nu Leng & M8s tour. We interviewed Jammo, one of the the ground-breaking DJ outfit…
How did you discover LSU?
Through a mutual friend, Ollie at Beating Heart. We had previously worked together and released music on a label he founded. His project with Beating Heart helped fund a new initiative in Malawi called Garden-to-Mouth and he invited us to visit Malawi and see the project starting and meet every one at LSU. It was such an amazing experience seeing the work first hand and to meet all the friendly school children, teachers and locals who really appreciated the efforts and the positive impact really hit home for me. The first visit was linked in with a DJ set at a fundraiser alongside Rudimental, Kidnap Kid, Petar Rabbit and more.
What made you want to support it?
Seeing the work and efforts first hand really warmed my heart and being surrounded by such kind and generous people is a great feeling. After I had returned from my first trip, I was already looking at the next opportunity to visit and we booked flights for a few months later, we were able to link it in with the Malawi festival ‘Lake Of Stars’ – While in Malawi I started to think about ways I could help, outside of sharing links and images on social media I really wanted to try make a big impact using my platforms available back home.
How have you raised money for LSU?
After thinking about ways we could help I started discussing them with a friend in Bristol, James Haggart who is a promoter for a club called Lakota. We were celebrating our 1st Birthday of ‘My Nu Leng & M8s’ and we were able to increase the ticket booking fee by £1 for each ticket sold. I owe a lot to James and his belief and support as it helped raise £1200 for the charity which was an amazing feeling. The success and ability to make a difference this way really hit home and we decided to take this method and attach it to our Leng & M8s UK Tour. We reached out to every promoter and explained our connection with LSU, the success of the Bristol show and started a dialogue of methods we could raise the £1 per ticket. We had to cross a few hurdles and issues but ultimately every promoter got behind us and it is thanks to them we are able to raise the money. To support a charity that may be unknown to them and really get behind our story and support us has been very humbling and we are very very grateful.
As are we! Big thanks to the promoters…
How did it feel to be able to do that?
It is an amazing feeling knowing that every raver and clubber that buys a ticket to each show is helping change the lives of the less fortunate in Malawi, helping feed hundreds of children and providing shelter and support. We have seen the power of LSU in Malawi and the impact they have on entire communities, to be able to be part of such an amazing charity and help using our tours and fan base is incredible.
What are your hopes for My Nu Leng & LSU?
First of all we hope to raise money to make a difference and impact on peoples lives in Malawi. If we are able to raise enough money to discuss a bigger project with LSU inside Malawi that would be amazing, for us to show all the promoters and ticket buyers exactly what we have been able to achieve is a huge bonus.In the long term we want to build a relationship and supportive team with LSU, to visit Malawi as often as possible, to help on the ground and see exactly what can be done to keep improving the quality of life there. We also want to show other promoters and DJs that they are able to use their platforms for supporting charities world wide, that music can bring people together in the clubs and around the world.
Spread the love – spread the word… #BeTheChange #BeLove
Buy Love Specs for your loved one this Valentines & make it count!