We are a person through other people.
Think about that. Let it roll around in your mind and ignite some vacant neuron.
Rose Hudson-Wilkin, 58, featured in one of the many podcasts we enjoyed on our 24-hour journey to Malawi. Her essay, What Makes Us Human, available on BBC Sounds, really is a thing of wonder. Her words resonated with us on many levels.
Rose is the first black woman to become a Church of England bishop. She grew up in Montego Bay, Jamaica. The Caribbean island nation, which she left in the late 70s, shares the motto: ‘out of many, one people.’ Rose talks so fondly about the island, and the care and compassion its people practised. She argues that communities are only formed and maintained through the selfless actions of each individual within it.
Rose speaks passionately about the South African Zulu philosophy, ‘I am because we are.’ To see the best in ourselves, we must contribute to society. It is the warmth that comes from participation and cooperation that makes us human. Rose reiterates that our humanity comes from discovering and maintaining our sense of belonging. Feeling part of a team, community or family provides us with a grounding. An attachment. When we belong, we are blessed.
The Chazuka school closed its doors for Christmas on the 20th December. And what a way to celebrate the start of the festive break. The Chazuka children put on a special performance, attended by their proud families. With the money raised from our #FestiveSchoolPack campaign, we also treated the children and their families to a delicious meal of rice, goat and soya (a real delicacy). What followed was a lively gurrewankulu – traditional music and dance.
A true sense of community shone through. The people of Chazuka were not checking emails, or staring into phones or tablets. They were alive in the moment: clapping, dancing, talking and laughing. Rejoicing in the success of their children’s achievements.
What strikes us so profoundly, as we watch the end-of-term Chazuka celebration, is the affection the community have for each other. They are together. A hub of warmth and friendship. United in their love for the school. The community is a living, breathing example of Rose’s philosophy.
We could not be more proud.
This 2020, we welcome you to join The Chazuka Project’s family. The Chazuka community. Together, we are working to revolutionise the lives of young children in Malawi. We are providing Chazuka’s children with an education. Opportunity. Hope. And a future full of possibility.
Just £15 can keep a child in The Chazuka school for a month. To donate, head over to our donation page for more information.
As we welcome a new year and a new decade, why not take some time to reflect on these words: we are a person through other people.