Sweetaroma in Mthuzi initiative
An organisation known as Sweetaroma of Christ Organisation has embarked on an advocacy initiative aimed at giving street children a platform to showcase their talents.
The organisation’s Executive Director James Mhone said Thursday that the initiative is being implemented in partnership with Lilongwe Social Rehabilitation Centre.
Mhone said the initiative was designed to reduce the impact of street children in the city of Lilongwe, using an artistic approach.
“This Initiative provides an opportunity to appreciate the artistic talent that the street children have. We want them to use their talents in disseminating different messages,” Mhone said.
He further said that they want the street children to disseminate messages pertaining to their own protection, parenting, child rights, child trafficking, education and Christianity.
He revealed that Lilongwe has the highest number of street children with an estimation of 87 percent followed by Blantyre with 82 percent.
“One in six children in Malawi is vulnerable to abuse and exploitation. As Sweetaroma, we are a registered Christian humanitarian organisation that believes that we were born to manifest the glory of God by being the very shelter to other people who lack peace and protection like street children,” he said.
He said that they also believe that children find themselves in the street because they are looking for a better place to live which their families for other reasons have failed to provide.
“We want to engage the government and all other stakeholders to realise the plight of street children. We want to tackle different issues such as child abuse and child trafficking,” Mhone said.
He also said that they want to unearth hidden talent among street children, hence the Mthuzi initiative.
“We want to make our streets safe and take the street children back to school but most of all as I said we want them to utilise their talents,” Mhone said.
He said through the initiative, they have formed a musical group of 35 who were once street children.
“The group is called SRC Mthuzi children and we have recorded an 11- track music album titled Ndine Ndani (Who am I) which has motivational songs based on messages of parenting, street life and HIV and Aids among others,” Mhone said.
Mhone said with the group, they want to do more and that recently they participated in the Mwayi Wosinthika by Chisomo Children’s Club and Mthuzi Street Festival.
“We have visited 15 local churches in order to expose the children to God-fearing environment and reach parents with parenting messages inside the church,” Mhone said.
Apart from music, Mhone said the group is also involved in other activities such as drama.
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