Anthony Wodelrif shares with his fellow South Sudanese and the rest of the world his first novel based upon a family legend. The main character travels to his home village where he meets his grandmother of many generations past. She tells him how his people solved a serious problem of long ago and suggests that this solution might help in the present.
In 2017 and 2018, Ann B. Smith and Antoni Bazia traveled to K'angome School in rural Malawi by way of Johannesburg, South Africa, and the capital of Malawi, Lilongwe. We were introduced to the area by Solomon Nkhalamba who was born and raised there but has since emigrated to Portland, Maine where he has furthered his studies in Education and is now teaching at the University of Southern Maine.
During our first trip, we visited the school and saw the many bright, eager faces of children who are fortunate to live in an African nation where grammar school is without fees. Their primary goal during those eight years is to learn mathematics and become literate in both Chichewa, the dominant tribal language, and English. Upon graduation they take a test of their skills, especially English fluency, because all subjects are taught in English at the secondary level. With only a blackboard and a piece of chalk, the dedicated teachers of K'angome school teach classes of 35-40 students. There are no books, no pencils, and, without electricity, no technology.
We were so amazed at what these Malawians were accomplishing with so few advantages that we returned the following year with our suitcases filled with copies of our publications as well as other books in English which required little explanation of the context of the modern world so that these children could go to their school library and take out a book appropriate for their reading level. Thank you Altrusa International of Maine for helping us make this happen!