Newsletter August 2022

What a whirlwind winter these past couple of months have been! Holly and Stefan have returned to the UK for a bit, while Josie and AJ made it back to Malawi from their visits home, along with previous intern Amanda. The team on the ground is flourishing as we have welcomed multiple volunteers/interns across various projects with more to come throughout the rest of the year!

Beyond our growing Butterfly team, the lodge has been bustling with tourists from around the world. We have loved the vibes everyone has been bringing and our communal spaces have come to life with energy. A special shout-out to Madi Jeffery for making our dreams come true by donating two paddleboards to the lodge! Everyone has loved taking them out for a spin and enjoying the views of Butterfly from the lake. Boat trips have been a fan favorite with the guests showing impressive rock jumping and beach volleyball skills. Weekly movie and quiz nights have started up to keep the variety of lodgers entertained well after the weekend shenanigans.

Speaking of entertainment, we are thrilled to announce that popular Malawian artist Faith Mussa has officially added Butterfly Space as a stop on his Summer Tour. Book your room now for the weekend of November 11th to party with us and Faith!
In other lodge news, we have various renovations under way to enhance our little paradise. The Beach House is being reroofed and extended to become an ensuite with a solar-heated shower and compost toilet. This upgrade will transform the chalet, which already has a private patio and hammock. Aligning perfectly with the closing of the Beach House due to construction, we have opened a new room, Leaper Cottage. Named in honor of founder AJ, this family room has a double bed, single bed and full bathroom. With views of the lake and soothing sounds from the waves we have already welcomed guests to enjoy this serene new space.

We are ecstatic about a partnership with Sanguo Ventures (SGV), an electric motorbike manufacturer. As part of a case study, SGV will be providing Butterfly Space with two of their electric motorbikes which will be used to collect cost comparison data. These e-bikes will be implemented across all projects and lodge activities to enhance our reach and expand the overall potential of our community involvement. The transport costs saved will be directly rerouted to operational costs such as wages, equipment & maintenance and will allow new opportunities for upgrades, site visits and community outreach. Catch us zooming around Nkhata Bay and beyond!

As always, there are exciting times ahead!
Join Us in Paradise! Volunteer at Butterfly
We are always looking for volunteers to join our team! There are many projects that are heading in exciting directions and would make the perfect sustainable getaway😄 Enjoying the crystal clear water of the lake while making an impact in the community is a great way to explore a new place, apply your skills in a developing country and take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. If you or someone you know is looking into volunteering abroad, we have a variety of projects to get involved in, and we welcome any and all skill sets. Visit our website to learn more about Malawi and the projects you could get involved with at Butterfly Space.
Jane and Steve Bridgeman from Littlehampton, UK have known about Butterfly Space for a number of years as Steve is a trustee of the CRED Foundation, one of our partner charities. They finally made their way to beautiful Nkhata Bay in April and were ready to make an impact. They did exactly this by helping finish our new Stepping Stones Nursery School. Another volunteer, Aisling from Ireland, also assisted in the setup and preparation of the nursery school during her time out here. We were thrilled to open this extension of Stepping Stones at the end of May and have welcomed a class of nearly 25 kiddos.

The Stepping Stones family is continuing to grow with a Vocational Centre opening its first section of carpentry training in October in line with the new school year. Training in tailoring, beauty and electric work will follow as the centre becomes more established. The goal is to provide students who cannot afford secondary school with an alternative form of higher education so that they are able to learn income-generating skills.

But wait there’s more!

With the help of two generous donors, we are constructing a multi-room library that will be outfitted with a plethora of books, laptops and a librarian which will allow us to welcome the community to use the space as well. As we expand, we ask for support from our international family to spread the word about our school and the work we are doing so we can continue to make an impact in the community. Please contact AJ at [email protected] to learn about student sponsorship options and other ways to support Stepping Stones!
Thank You!
Thanks to various donors, we are pleased to be in the final phase of building completion for the Pundu Disability Centre! A special shout out to the Bridgeman and Korzec families for their generous contributions. After nearly a year of working with the Pundu disability group, we have overcome multiple obstacles together to be at the stage of finishing touches and preparing for vocational training sessions to begin in tailoring, carpentry and permaculture. We have also been working with Malawian volunteer, Luckson, to gather data from the group and implement a monitoring and evaluation system at the centre.

To find more ways you can support our two disability centres click here
MSPC Update
Since the 6 month closure of schools for Covid-19 two years ago, Malawian teachers and pupils have been under a massive amount of pressure, having to do ten-hour school days with reduced holidays to make up for the lost time. Extracurricular activities have been extremely limited due to this.

As of October, the school session will finally be caught up and we look forward to the teachers and students having more time for their permaculture activities. As an organisation we will use this time to assess all our member schools and evaluate their progress and future plans. This will be massively assisted by the electric motorbike part of the SGV partnership which will drastically reduce our transport costs. We are continuing to improve our Core Programme here in Nkhata Bay with insights gained through our Revaluation sessions last year. These small but significant changes will improve our decentralisation to share more information amongst MSPC participants. As winter comes to a close, the schools have been carrying out their Open Day showcases on-site and Visits to Another site by coming to the lodge. All of our work is supported by multiple volunteers/interns already here on the ground with us, with many more joining in the coming months!

Check out our ongoing fundraiser to support our new developments.
Chombe FP School’s visit to Butterfly Space
Wish List
Wondering what to bring with you or what you can send to help out? We are constantly working on project & lodge improvements and are looking for a variety of items that could assist in our community development. Check out our hefty Wish List for project-specific equipment and materials. If you can’t source specific things but have space in your luggage, we could always use baby clothes, reading glasses, batteries, towels, bedding, first aid kits and solar charging headlamps/portable batteries. We are currently in the process of establishing fundraising pages through third-party platforms such as Facebook, GoFundMe, Chuffed and Smile to make monetary contributions possible. All funds raised will be put directly towards community development efforts. Follow the social media links below to stay up to date. We thank you for your contributions and extend our gratitude for your generosity and ongoing support!

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