Hooke Court in Malawi was established as a UK charity in 2015 having been involved with 9 schools in the Bandawe area of Malawi since 2011. The charity has 8 trustees – most of whom are highly qualified teachers and Head Teachers.
Our charity aims to help improve standards of primary education in the these 9 schools by providing UK trained teachers to give advice and help in and out of the classroom as well as to fund raise to give the schools basic resources.
Mandy Cooper, trustee and her husband Pete, have spent many months in Malawi over recent years and have developed a strong relationship with the teachers in the Bandawe area of Malawi. As a result of this it was decided that Hooke Court would become involved in helping the schools in this area. Since 2014 we have been taking groups of volunteers to help implement phonics in the schools, provide team building activities for the children and carry out minor repair and maintenance in the classrooms. In August 2015 a party of 17 volunteers travelled to Malawi to work with the teachers and children. We raised money to pay for renovations to a girl’s boarding house, repair and resource some classrooms and provide a few basic resources for two schools. Two UK schools also forged links with 2 Malawi schools.
In September 2015 the Hooke Court in Malawi Charity was formed.
In 2015 the World Bank ranked Malawi as the poorest country in the world based on GDP. Only 40 – 50% of children complete primary education and 11% complete secondary education.
The Government made primary school education free for all children a few years ago but refrained from providing the schools with any more funding, resources or infrastructure to support this initiative. Consequently, teachers are faced with classes of 100 – 120 or more children with no resources except possibly a few desks. The parents are too poor to provide pencils and paper, the school has no money to buy such items making learning a very difficult task.
The Government have more recently stipulated that all children from 5 years old are to be taught everything in English. Previously, this was compulsory from 11 years old. Teachers need to have a comprehensive understanding of the English language and ways of teaching reading to enable this to be implemented.
At 13 years old, the children must take a test to enable them to enter into secondary education. The cost of this test is 50p, which is far too expensive for most so the majority of children leave school and join their parents farming for survival.
‘a fabulous opportunity for us to develop our skills and knowledge as well as helping others.’
Upcoming and past fundraising events
The One Hundred Club is up and running. For £5 a month you have the opportunity of winning one of 4 prizes every month - £50 for first prize!
If you would like to join please contact Ros Bush on 01308 862260 or
In partnership with School in a Bag, this promises to be a fun day for all the family involving exciting and challenging tasks for everyone to enjoy.
In February 2016, a hugely successful evening that raised £6,940. Not only did we reach our initial target of £5,000 but also have funds left over for our feeding programme. (See latest news).
The event also raised awareness of our Charity and as a result we have received offers of donations and help. Although our primary target is education it is becoming increasingly obvious that we need to diversify in order to fulfil our main aim.
‘it has been the experience of a lifetime – thank you. I now have to start fund raising and spread the word.!’
GET INVOLVED! - Join our team of volunteers who go out for 2 weeks in August to help teach and maintain the local schools.
‘I have learnt a lot about myself and my outlook. Loved the project, beyond my expectations’
Your money could help to raise much needed funds for the people in one of the poorest countries in the world.
This can cost as little as £70 per term and will enable a 13 year old child to continue their education rather than join their parents in the fields.
You can make a single donation or monthly donation...
Please transfer funds to:
Account Name: Hooke Court in Malawi
Sort Code: 40-19-21
Account Number: 31553569
Please make cheque payable to: Hooke Court in Malawi
Postal Address: Sarah McConnell, Hooke Court, Dorset DT8 3NX
Boost your donation by 25p of Gift Aid for every £1 you donate!
Please download the form, fill and return by post or email to:
Sarah McConnell, Hooke Court, Dorset DT8 3NX
Download Gift Aid Form
Finally the charity is official! We have been able to register with the Charity Commission and are currently in the process of registering with Virgin Money Giving. We will update our website with the details as we receive them.
The school summer term in Malawi is coming to a close and we have been able to provide a meal a day for all 5000 children for the last few months. New crops should mean they will be able to feed themselves for the holiday and into next term. With the poor weather however we are concerned we will need to start the feeding programme again in January. This means we will need an extra £15000 to ensure they all get one meal day from January until July 2017.
Thank you so much to everyone who has been donating so much money, clothes books and toys. We are now busy packing as much as we can to take with us this August. A party of 16 will be travelling to Chintheche during August to work with the teachers and children, to provide some much needed maintenance in the schools as well as to help set up some school ‘farms’. We now have enough funds to provide essentials for both the pupils and teachers as well as materials to maintain the buildings and fertilisers and seeds to introduce growing food at a two schools.
In 2015 flooding followed by intermittent rains in areas in Malawi affected the maize harvest. Consequently, the price of maize has gone from KW1,500 for 20 kg six months ago to KW5,500 at the present time, (£1.50 to £5.50). Whilst the area we work with is in the cassava growing belt the local population relies on maize to keep them going through the “lean” period. At current prices people just do not have the money to buy even this most basic food. Alan, one of our Trustees visited Malawi in January and saw the situation for himself. Since then the situation has deteriorated and we are receiving more information about the food shortages. Many children survive generally on one meal a day, now some are not even having that – there are tales of mangoes being used to make porridge, crops dug up early, children staying away from school because of hunger.
The Trustees have taken the decision that we must divert resources and fund a feeding programme for the children in our sponsored schools. We estimate that to feed all the children in the area one meal of maize porridge each day from April until the harvest in October we need £15,000. We estimate we have about £4,000 towards the £15,000 so much more money is needed to fund a meal a day for these children.
Mandy and Pete are heading out there this month to commence the purchase and organisation.
Please help us in any way you can. Every 2p donated buys one child a meal of maize porridge.
If you would like to Volunteer, Donate or have any questions in regards to the Charity, please don't hesitate to contact us.
Hooke Court in Malawi
Dorset DT8 3NX
Telephone: 01308 862260