Malawi, also known as “The Warm Heart of Africa,” is among the smallest countries on the continent and is one of the least developed in the world. The country continuously faces challenges with building, expansion, healthcare and education, and according to 2010 data from The World Bank, 50 percent of the population lives in poverty.
In June, Bill Honsaker, Managing Director of our proud partner JLL, and his daughter, Jadyn, had the opportunity to travel to Malawi through their church, The Grove, with a little support from Willmeng and other community sponsors. Honsaker led a team that was responsible for agriculture and construction development, and throughout their two weeks abroad they worked on projects that would change lives in Malawi.
The team assisted in the reconstruction of a bridge critical to travel and installed a 5,000-liter water tank with a solar-powered pump for irrigation. In addition, they assisted with the construction of a medical clinic and a sewing building for widows. They also built a brick hut and an animal shelter for the village’s pigs, cows and chickens.
The group made a huge impact medically, judiciously and societally, as well.
“Medical clinics were held in multiple villages on a daily basis treating hundreds of patients with a variety of health issues,” said Honsaker. “Several people were released from prison that had been wrongfully arrested and then never prosecuted…just left in prison with no judicial process.”
Conferences were held that addressed topics such as banning female minors from marriage and encouraging literacy in young women.
“The interaction between those in our group and the people of Malawi was incredibly special,” said Honsaker. “While I know we provided much [to the people through] our efforts, everybody from America received as much in return.”
When the group returned home from Malawi, Honsaker encouraged all of his family, friends and industry peers to experience a volunteer trip like the one he’d been on.
“I know there are a million reasons why you can’t, but yes you can, and you will have no regrets,” he said.
Willmeng is honored to work with individuals with such huge hearts and love hearing about the change that our partners are making in the world. Honsaker and his family are incredible people and we always looking forward to working with him and his team.