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Plan Malawi to mentor African Spelling Bee spellers

Phoebe Kasoga

Plan Malawi International has stepped in to support the African Spelling Bee, to be hosted in the country from December 6 to 11 2022, by organising a mentorship workshop for all contestants.

The African Spelling Bee preliminary and grand finale, to feature spellers from several countries including Malawi, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Ethiopia, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Nigeria, Botswana, Kenya and Zambia, will be held at Golden Peacock in Blantyre on December 8 and 9, respectively.

Malawi National Spelling Bee founder Lewis Mbaula welcomed Plan International Malawi’s gesture of hosting a mentorship workshop to be spearheaded by its country director Phoebe Kasoga.

“We are excited with this mentorship programme and believe it will help a lot in providing guidance and support to the contestants for them to do well during the competition,” Mbaula said.

He further said that mentorship programmes are much more complex and that they do not just focus on the learning curriculum.

“This mentoring programme by Plan International will teach African Spelling Bee participants on how to be invested in school, in their future, as well as being accountable. On top of helping the spellers to focus on school and prepare for higher education, the mentoring programme will teach them proper behavioural skills,” Mbaula said.

Nine learners will represent the country in the junior and senior categories.

The junior contestants include Yobu Mandala from Kasangu Primary School in Dowa, Miracle Labeka from Diversity Academy in Chikwawa, Abdul Chikalongwe from Puteya Primary School in Machinga and Limbani Leckson from Chinguluwe Primary School in Salima.

The senior category will feature Adella Flao from Atsikana Pa Ulendo Secondary School, Janice Dulanya from Sir Harry International High School in Zomba and Owen Saukira from Zomba Urban Secondary School.

The African Spelling Bee senior champion is expected to travel to United States of America (USA) courtesy of Scripps National Spelling Bee of USA. The prize includes airfare and accommodation for the champion and one parent.

African Spelling Bee was first hosted in South Africa in 2016 and then 2017, before moving to Kenya in 2018 and then Uganda in 2019.

The contest returns this year following a two-year break due to Covid.

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