Malawi is one of the world’s least developed countries where a significant portion of the population lives below the poverty line with serious consequences for children and women. It is hard enough to imagine young women taking the leading role in influencing sustainable development in this country. However, it is even harder to imagine a changed society where people are motivated and take the initiative to start a positive change and using readily available local resources rather than depending on international aid.
Growing up in a poor family, I always wondered whether there was a different way of living from what I was exposed to. Dependency on donations, corruption, bribery, child abuse and exploitation, illiteracy and laziness are some of the most common factors that delay sustainable development in Malawi.
When I joined The Sparkle Foundation in 2016, I knew it was a huge opportunity for me to make a difference. I realised life is more meaningful when you are always looking to grow and working towards a goal. Becoming a Director at a very young age, put me in a leadership position that I took as an opportunity to help inspire both the youth and women to take a stand in fighting and creating brighter futures for our society. My goal in life is to encourage a positive mindset amongst Malawians whereby they start taking responsibility for their own lives and strive towards creating a sustainable community. I am very lucky to work with people around the world who are dedicated, passionate, positive, determined and hardworking and want to bring change for the future.
Sarah Brook, who is one of the youngest charity CEOs in the world, is not only my boss but also my inspiration. Being both young and a woman is so challenging, yet it is this very fact that makes it even more significant because through all the challenges she has faced, she still keeps going and continues to be a role model to us all. Malawi has the potential to develop economically, environmentally and socially. It just needs the right mindset and I believe if we work together, this is something we can achieve.
– Lusungu Zgambo