Location: Malawi • Cost: $3795 (including international airfare)

Departure Airport: JFK • Age: 16-19 

Dates: 

June 3 - June 19

June 17 - July 3

 


OVERVIEW

Welcome to beautiful Malawi! Our summer coincides with the Malawian winter, so expect to wear a light jacket most days on your trip. You and your fellow volunteers will stay in the capital city of Lilongwe, and volunteer in the Dzaleka refugee camp about one hour outside of the city. This is the largest refugee camp YRC works in, with over 34,000 refugees currently living in the camp. Together with our partner organization, you will have the opportunity to improve the living conditions and educational opportunities for camp residents.  


COUNTRY CHALLENGES

In the past decade, Malawi has been able to make significant economic and structural reforms and sustain economic growth but remains one of the poorest countries in the world. Approximately 51.5% percent of Malawi’s population lives below the poverty line with 20.1% living in extreme poverty. The economy is heavily dependent on agriculture (employing approximately 80% of the population), and is vulnerable to external shocks. YRC strives to facilitate sustainable projects in the communities we serve for the wonderful people of Malawi to enjoy for years to come.

The refugee population in Malawi suffers from extreme job insecurity, lack of political, economic, and educational opportunity, food and housing insecurity, and lack of access to clean water and sanitary facilities. Refugees in Dzaleka currently lack access to proper medical care, with access to one clinic for 34,000 refugees and one water source for the entire camp. 

SIGHTSEEING

For your sightseeing weekends, you will have the chance to experience an overnight African Safari, enjoy local traditional meals, and swim and snorkel in the beautiful Malawi Lake. On the way back, you will stay overnight in New York where you will visit the Manhattan Temple, the Statue of Liberty, and take a tour of Ellis Island and the immigration museum.


TEMPLE

Although there is not yet a temple in Malawi, you will have the unique opportunity to end your trip on a spiritual note by serving in the Manhattan New York temple.  As the government is fairly new in Malawi, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is also quite young. Being recognized as an official religion in just 1995, the LDS faith is still widely unknown to most citizens in Malawi. Through your service and personal example, you will have the opportunity to plant spiritual seeds to those you come into contact with during your stay.


MALAWI FACTS

Located in southern Africa, Malawi is landlocked and shares a border with Mozambique, Zambia, and Tanzania. According to the 2018 Census, the country has an estimated population of 17.5 million, up from 13.02 in 2008.

In the past decade, Malawi has been able to make significant economic and structural reforms and sustain economic growth but remains one of the poorest countries in the world. Approximately 51.5% percent of Malawi’s population lives below the poverty line with 20.1% living in extreme poverty. The economy is heavily dependent on agriculture (employing approximately 80% of the population), and it is vulnerable to external shocks. 

Malawi has made progress in building its human capital—the knowledge, skills and health that people accumulate over their lives—in recent years. Life expectancy is up to 64.2 years in 2018 (World Health Organization) from 63.9 in 2017. Self-reported literacy (reading and writing in any language) is 81% for males and 66% for females (15+ years of age). However, poverty and inequality remain stubbornly high. The national poverty rate increased slightly from 50.7% in 2010 to 51.5% in 2016, but extreme national poverty decreased from 24.5% in 2010/11 to 20.1 in 2016/17. Poverty is driven by poor performance of the agriculture sector, volatile economic growth, population growth, and limited opportunities in non-farm activities.

Malawi’s development challenges are multi-pronged, including vulnerability to external shocks such as weather and health. Weather remains a key part of the economic cycle, with the negative impact of bad weather compounded by factors such as population growth and environmental degradation. Energy shortages still stand out, with about 11% of the population having access to electricity. Infrastructure development, the manufacturing base, and adoption of new technology are low, and corruption levels remain high with Transparency International ranking Malawi at 122/180 economies in 2018.

 

*Note: All info subject to final adjustment. 

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