Orphan Daycare Centre

Malawi 29.12.08 010

Originally uploaded by wellsforzoe

Building problem’s are worldwide phenomenon!!
We employed a builder to do our orphan daycare centre, here at Salisbury Line, Mzuzu, in cooperation with the Mbawemi women’s group. Harisen and myself discussed progress over the last few days and decided to terminate him (as they say), as they were coming late and leaving early, even though they were on contract.
We now have the people who built the accommodation at Lusangazi.
Looks as if they have started very well. Hope they continue!!

A Malawi Christmas Wish

In wishing you all a very happy Christmas and a rewarding New Year, we include
what has become our own card for the past two years. It doesn’t have the star or the mud hut,
but there is something of the Christmas miracle about it.
A young woman accepting what God had given her, willingly, as Mary did.
Lack of proper housing.
A new baby.
and a world that doesn’t care.
May God bless you all.
And as a friend sent from the US in a recent email:
May the birth of Jesus, be the reason for the Season.

This is Lincy Longwe who lives in the remote rural village
of M’Bama, Mzgora, which is 25 miles north east of Mzuzu, Malawi.
She is 31, married to Charles, with four children:
Alic (10), Cryness (6), Virginia (3), and Racheal (1), pictured.
When I asked what she would like in return for the use of her picture she replied,
with some hesitancy, “cement for my floor”. And for yourself? She smiled, “a blanket would be nice”.
Good news! She now has clean water from the new village pump.
She is also delighted with her concrete floor and two new blankets.
Her Christmas prayer for you is in her native Timbuka language:

“Chiuta Wam’dangihrani Mu Vyose Ivgo Mukuchita
Ndipo Wave Namwe Pa Hyengo Iyi Ya Christmas”

“May God Guide You In Everything You Do And Be
With You During This Christmas And Always”

Mother to the Maasai

Email from UK, from a truly amazing woman, and family
Great to get your newsletter with updates from Malawi.
John Holloway from CED (Christian Engineers in Development) who lives near us, has done a proposal for gravity pipe lines for Irkeepusi. I mentioned in our Christmas card that it comes to £210,000 for the 4000 people and 20,000 livestock, because so many storage tanks are needed. We wondered whether we need to plan for so much water as the Maasai only use about 10 litres a day at present, and this would not increase much because they would probably still use streams to wash clothes and water some of their livestock. John said 40 litres per person per day is the Tanzanian governments recommendation, although Kenya and some other countries recommend only 30 litres. This is what he has used in his calculations.
I am attaching his estimates to see what you think?
Love to you all

She uses all her own money.
Can anyone help out.

May the birth of Jesus, be the reason for the season.

An email from a small Church Community in the US.

Greetings from Fremont, Wisconsin, USA,

One of our parishioners, Melvin Maierhafer, has been in touch with you regarding Hope United Church of Christ raising money to help with your mission. We are in the process of sending you a check, but need to check the postal address.
May the birth of Jesus be the reason for the season. May God bless you in your efforts.

Hope UCC, Fremont, WI, USA

The world still has great people, Dreamers and Doers.

More Hope from an email from a friend in the Basque Country

“I live in one of the richest parts of the world, yet I grumble. I have food, shelter and clean water but I grumble. I have schools, hospitals and medicine on my doorstep, but I still grumble. I seem to forget there are those with no water, no medicine, no shelter, no schools, no books and yet have the energy to rejoice in a bowl of rice. I want to stop saying somebody needs to do something. I believe we are all somebody.”
More on this later, but in the meantime, DO SOMETHING.

Sinead O’Connor and John Waters

Sinead O’Connor to collaborate with John Waters

Just saw this from Hotpress:
Sinéad O’Connor has collaborated with former Hot Press scribe John Waters on a charity song that will be released in March.

Waters’ – who wrote last year’s Irish entry in Eurovision – said he penned it especially with Sinéad in mind. The song is to appear on a compilation album and will be released on World Water Day in March.

Speaking to Hot Press, Waters said: “I’ve done this song with Sinéad. It is pretty amazing, I can tell you. Steve Cooney is producing. It sounds amazing. It’s called ‘Baby, Let Me Buy You A Drink’, and it’s an attempt to catch the idea of Ireland and the Irish being both hound and hare in history, specifically in relation to Africa, and that we owe both friendship and reparation.”

Wells for Zoë- Water for Life CD

Waters’ describes the singers voice as being “an absolute, total intuition for emotion”. He adds: “She can look at a song that has been sung a thousand times by other people and find what it’s really about. With the song I did, she just changed the phrasing – in ways that I hadn’t dreamt of – to make it live in a different way. What other people think in terms of technicality, she thinks in terms of emotions. So what you hear is not someone else singing, but your own heart being sung. She is not trained to be a great singer, she is trained to find the emotion of it – and that’s the key to it.”

Waters acknowledges that eyebrows might be raised by his collaboration with Sinéad, particularly considering their much publicised break-up following the birth of their daughter.

“This is life. Time changes everything. We get on wonderfully these days. We had a very full-on relationship, while it lasted. Nothing that happens is separate from who you are. We were very full-on people and, inevitably, when a feeling turns, it goes radically in the other direction for a while,” he said.

“I have a great time for Sinéad, quite separately from our relationship as parents. I think Sinéad is a genius – a musical genius. So we get on very well now and we have the most amazing child, who fills us with wonder every day. How could you be looking at that – the creation you’ve been involved in – and not be reconciled in some profound way, you know? I have a much better relationship with Sinéad than with pretty much any other ex of mine. I often wonder about people who say they have very good platonic relationships with their exes. I think that’s a terrible contradiction because it suggests that the relationship was not very passionate to begin with, if you can just stop short and say, Oh, let’s be friends. I always say, actually, I have lots of friends, but if one of them dies I’ll let you know!”

(c) 2008 hotpress.com

The final weapon of mass destruction for the poor.

from Common Ground
Common Ground is an independent publication, 100% Canadian owned. It is Western Canada’s biggest and best-loved monthly magazine dedicated to health, wellness, ecology and personal growth.

Fight against terminator seeds not over

Murray Dobbin

Of all the perverse, corporate manipulations of the growing and processing of food, none is more sinister and destructive to the public good than the so-called terminator technology. Terminator seeds are patented, genetically modified seeds, deliberately engineered to become sterile after one harvest; farmers can’t use their seeds to plant the next crop and must purchase new seed every crop year. The technology threatens the livelihood of 1.4 billion people dependent on farmer-saved seeds and the globe’s biodiversity.
As the women of the international farmers’ organization La Via Campesina have said, “Terminator technology is a weapon of mass destruction.” That’s why it’s the focus of a new, social media activist site, RightOnCanada.ca. But more on this below.
In fact, there is a global fight against this technology – currently the subject of a moratorium on its commercialization – involving literally hundreds of farmers’ and peasants’ organizations and others concerned about the future of the planet. The Canadian government is one of the principal targets of the campaign. Canada is one of the “Terminator Trio,” comprised of the governments of Australia, New Zealand and Canada. The US also wants the moratorium lifted, but it has not signed the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Many terminator critics accuse Canada of doing the US’s dirty work in the hope of some return favour. Last year, terminator opponents won a significant victory at a meeting of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Curitiba, Brazil. The Brazilian government, chairing the meeting, announced that the 188-member governments of the CBD agreed to reject language that would have undermined the six-year-old moratorium on terminator.
Despite this massive rejection, the Harper government has not changed its position, calling for a “case by case risk assessment” of terminator seeds. The Liberals also opposed a ban when they constituted the government, and despite their newfound commitment to the environment, have not changed their stance. According to Liberals’ agriculture critic Wayne Easter, “…all plants with novel traits must be studied on a case-by-case basis…”
As matters stand now, the two political parties that have a realistic chance of becoming government after the next election are both opposed to an outright ban on terminator technology. That leaves the Greens and the NDP at the national level. Both parties support a ban and last spring the NDP put forward Bill C-448, a private member’s bill known as the Terminator Seeds Ban Act. The bill, introduced by the NDP’s Alex Atamanenko, died on the order paper when Stephen Harper prorogued Parliament.
Part of the problem with a parliamentary system, especially one without proportional representation, is that it produces executive government with few checks and balances of its power. Voters have little influence between elections because they have no effective access to power. That’s something that Kathleen Ruff, former head of the BC Human Rights Commission and of the Court Challenges program (recently killed by the Harper government), wants to change.
Ruff has established the online activist site, RightOnCanada.ca, which is focussed on human rights and intended to replicate the famously successful MoveOn.org in the US. MoveOn has more than three million members and was a major player in the Democratic victory over the Republicans in the last US Congressional election.
MoveOn describes itself as “… a service – a way for busy, but concerned, citizens to find their political voice in a system dominated by big money and big media.” That pretty much describes RightOnCanada. It took on the terminator technology as its inaugural issue last spring and its email letter-writing campaign saw 13,000 messages sent to the leaders of the federal parties in the Commons. The campaign preceded the NDP’s private members’ bill and helped highlight what is normally a low-key affair. RightOnCanada has since taken on the issue of “deep integration,” the secret plan to divert Canadian water from Canadian rivers to the US and the so-called “harmonization” with the US of standards for pesticide residues on fruits and vegetables.
But it expects to revisit the terminator issue. That’s because Monsanto, the corporate poster boy for genetically modified organisms, is now poised to commercialize this technology. In 1999, feeling the enormous pressure of an international campaign, Monsanto pledged not to pursue terminator technology. But on June 1, 2007, Monsanto negotiated a $1.5 billion takeover of the world’s largest cotton seed company, Delta & Pine Land, the US company that developed and patented the world’s first terminator seed technology.
According to the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (a partner with RightOnCanada) this can mean only one thing: Monsanto has broken its pledge and is now on track to take this perverse technology into the marketplace. Kathleen Ruff notes that RightOnCanada will be there to fight any such move.

Murray Dobbin is a Vancouver author and journalist whose latest book, Paul Martin: CEO for Canada? published by James Lorimer is in BC bookstores now.

Tell the Canadian government to ban terminator technology
The right to save seeds is a crucial part of the human right to food. This basic right is threatened by terminator technology, which genetically engineers plants to produce sterile seeds after first harvest and, if introduced, would force farmers to purchase seeds every year from transnational seed corporations.
If allowed to proceed, terminator technology would transfer control of the world’s seed supply from the hands of farmers to the monopoly control of large corporations. It would also threaten the biodiversity of agriculture and the health of the planet’s food supply. “Preventing farmers from re-planting saved seed will increase economic injustice all over the world,” says the World Council of Churches, which has called for action to stop terminator technology.
Recognizing its inherent dangers, governments attending meetings of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity created an international moratorium on terminator technology in 2000. The Canadian government, however, with the help of Australia, New Zealand and some major biotechnology companies, tried in February 2005 and again in January 2006 to overthrow the moratorium.
Tell our government to support the ban on terminator technology. Visit http://www.rightoncanada.ca (click on campaigns) to send a letter to agriculture minister Chuck Strahl, Prime Minister Harper, the opposition agriculture critics and your MP.