Women of Light - Malawi is a matriarchal society and is largely governed by women. This grandmother built her own home, raised four children and continues to help support her eldest daughter and her offspring. These lights will afford her granddaughters the opportunity to perform in school and to go on to apply this inherent work ethic in powerful jobs that have a positive impact on their surrounding communities and country at large.
Redson's Advantage - Electric light is little more than a myth in rural Malawi. Because of this, youth growing up in these regions cannot study at night nor can they achieve the country's curriculum set forth by governing bodies based in well-lit cities. Because of the Dream Lights program, Redson will become one of the first youth in his area to break this status quo, rise to the top of his class and go on to become one of the 2% of Malawian youth that will study at a secondary school level.
A paraglider dies after only 400 hours of flying, but what if they could fly forever? Well, after 14 years, and about 2500 hours of flying, I had retired six un-flyable wings to my closet and it was beginning to be a problem. I was holding onto them for sentimental reasons, unwilling to separate myself from the magical adventures each one of them encompassed. What else could I do? [right:image:22306]Years earlier, I had travelled to Malawi, Africa and helped a young man there become his country's first Paraglider Pilot. Since then I have struggled to find a way to help other foreigners feel comfortable in doing the same. To me, the path was always clear, but less clear was determining how the project could be funded. Unwilling to be under the thumb of corporate sponsors or take the standard approach, of soliciting donations of westerners for yet another project in Africa, I was in a moral standoff of sorts. And then one day I opened my closet only to have 40 kg of precariously balanced bags of old nylon come tumbling down and it hit me! I could take these gliders to Malawi, find people who needed work, teach them to transform them into something useful. Then together, we could sell them to support both their community and this unique paragliding initiative. [b]That's what happened, and over the past three years:[/b] - four hard-working moms have learned to sew - they have setup their own communal work space, complete with two foot-powered sewing machines - 20 un-flyable wings have been sent to Malawi - 250 bags have been produced and sold as a result - the program has become self-sustaining model of repurposing, dedication, and ingenuity. [show:image:22684] [b]Now that the bags are selling and the program is running, attention has gone into supporting:[/b] - the a Solar Powered Internet Centre for Youth, complete with a large table and four tablets with access to Wikipedia - 15 volunteers stay at The School of Dreams centre, further contributing to the program infrastructure and local economy - two young Malawians, in their desires to fly free, with another two slated for training in 2019 [right:image:23339]And so what about your wings? [b]Will they fly forever?[/b] Will that porous old nylon be transformed into jobs, useful items and the opportunities for the young men and women of Malawi to share your passion for free-flight? That's for you to decide! Either way, I am grateful to you for taking the time to read about what we have created and invite you to be a part of the magic in whatever way works for you. Here are a few useful links: - Check out the beautiful new [url=https://etsy.com/shop/TheSchoolofDreams]Adventure Bags[/url] - [url=http://theschoolofdreams.org/equipment_form]Donate a glider[/url] (flyable or not) to The School of Dreams - [url=http://theschoolofdreams.org/volunteer_form]Volunteer[/url] in 2019 Ben :) [group:image:22695][group:image:22709][group:image:22710][group:image:22712]
Today is a day we can all join hands and Celebrate! Today marks a milestone of determination and the power of Dreams in the face of Fear, Adversity and Despair. Friends, Today, many pieces of a very complex puzzle will align as the first ever School of Dreams participant will step foot in Malawi and begins engaging with the magic we've all, in some way, big or small, contributed to by standing behind this unique concept. [right:image:22839][url=/participants/matthew_van_zyl]Matthew van Zyl[/url] of South Africa, we welcome you as the first, non-commercial, Solo Pilot to begin the magical Dream Exchange process with the beautiful people of Malawi. May you share your gifts and be equally moved and inspired by theirs, and may your wing soar high as the hearts of the children, excited to greet you upon your return to Earth. On top of bringing gliders for future paragliding students for supervised ground-handling, Matthew will bring his passion for inspiring classrooms around the world about this wonderful form of free-flight. Inspired? [url=/opportunities/fly_malawi_2018]Registration for 2018[/url] will open next January. [b]Today, you can Support this Project by:[/b] [url=/opportunities/contribute_equipment]Contributing Small or X-Small, Airworthy, Student[/url] gliders to the project Grabbing an [url=https://www.etsy.com/shop/TheSchoolofDreams/]Adventure Bag[/url], made from recycled paragliders by proud mothers of Malawi Downloading any of Benjamin's inspiring [url=http://benjaminjordan.com/film/]Adventure Documentaries[/url] Today! Thank you all! <3 Ben [group:image:22842][group:image:22838][group:image:22840]