Friday the 13th is unlucky for some but not for RIPPLE Africa! Today we welcomed our local MP and Speaker of the House of Commons, the Rt Hon John Bercow, to our Buckingham office to tell him about the amazing work staff and supporters do over in Malawi.
He was extremely impressed with Geoff and Liz’s story of how RIPPLE started and how, through sheer hard work, dedication and determination both here in the UK and in Malawi, the charity has developed so far.
John has been to Malawi and remembers that it was a country of great poverty, and he was interested to hear all about the projects we support, especially how each project area – Environment, Education and Healthcare – touch all areas of the lives of the local communities in and around Nkahta Bay District.
Geoff talked about the very successful Fish Conservation project and how, with our help and support, the local communities are really taking ownership and are seeing the benefits of our work to prevent over fishing in the lake.
He very much supported our ethos of giving a hand up and not a hand out, working with the local communities to develop skills and knowledge about protecting their environment and resources for the future.
John was impressed by the impact we make and thoroughly agreed that the only way to help developing countries make a meaningful change is to work at grassroots level, empowering and giving ownership to the local people.
We even managed to squeeze in a game of table tennis! Being “obsessed” about tennis meant that he was very keen to play!
John was taken with the idea that it was a good stress buster to have in the office – so look out House of Commons, there could be table tennis tables appearing all over the building!
It was a fantastic meeting, and we are very grateful for John’s support.