Malawi is Marching to Support the Victims of Climate Change

Malawi is a charter member of the March for Science — this will be our third year! Our ranks have grown each year, and in 2019, we’d like to do more than march.

We have a perfect opportunity to link science to real life: over 500,000 Malawians have been displaced by torrential rains and flooding. There are many contributors to this tragedy, but the influence of climate change on “extreme weather” is one of them.

Our event this year will support the flood victims – we will collect gently used clothes, blankets and jackets for distribution. Our program will take place in or near one of the camps and will emphasize the link between climate change and our changing weather patterns.

The program will be a mix of humor (the weathermen on the television stations in Malawi are very funny), education (with climate scientists from the University of Malawi) and inspiration: a screening of “The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind”. One of the Malawian actors in the movie will be with us to relay in more detail the story of William Kamkwamba, the Malawian who figured out how to use windmills to irrigate the fields near his home in Malawi.

We will coordinate our activities with the District Disaster Coordinator down in the Lower Shire Valley — our initial forays have been very promising.

We would also like to sustain our impact over the next year — we shouldn’t just make a big splash on 4 May and then disappear. We are still discussing the shape of this longer-term activity.

We greatly appreciate being a small part of a large movement and appreciate the energy and passion of the organizers in the US.

Zikomo (which is “thank you”, in Chichewa)!

Photo by Liz Tilley