Door mat
Door mat

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Gertrude
Gertrude

Gertrude (16) poses in the garden next to her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Three sisters
Three sisters

Sisters Gertrude (16), Elisa (14) and Maureen (11) relax at their gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

For the first time since 2005, the three sisters live in their own home. After being split apart and sent to various orphanages, they are finally able to start a new life together, as a family.

Cooking
Cooking

Sisters Gertrude (16), Elisa (14) and Maureen (11) cook in the courtyard of their gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Elisa
Elisa

Elisa (14) poses in the garden next to her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Maureen
Maureen

Maureen (11) poses in the garden next to her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Happiness
Happiness

Happiness (17) stands next to the front door of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

She has lived here since 2015. Like all the others, her gowelo has a living room, a bedroom and a storage room. Her father died when she was very young, and she was sent to an orphanage by her mother, where she remained until she was brought back to her village. Happiness now lives opposite her mother, in the community where she was born.

Thomas outside his gowelo
Thomas outside his gowelo

Thomas (19) stands on the backside of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Thomas is studying agriculture at Green Malata, a nearby entrepreneurial training village which is run by the same charity that built his gowelo. In his house he raises guinea pigs, pigeons, and cultivates fields in the surrounding countryside. “My gowelo is good because I can go to school and I do not have to worry about where I will sleep.”

Jennifer
Jennifer

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2017.

Jennifer & her new gowelo
Jennifer & her new gowelo

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Jennifer’s gowelo was recently renovated and expanded to include a private shower and cooking area.

Thomas & his dog
Thomas & his dog

Thomas (19) sits with his dog on the porch of his gowelo, Thyolo District, Malawi, 2016.

Thomas is studying agriculture at Green Malata, a nearby entrepreneurial training village which is run by the same charity that built his gowelo. In his house he raises guinea pigs, pigeons, and cultivates fields in the surrounding countryside. “My gowelo is good because I can go to school and I do not have to worry about where I will sleep.”

Teresa
Teresa

Teresa (18) stands in her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

She moved into her gowelo in 2015, after she graduated from high school. After her parents passed away, Teresa, and her brother Thomas (also featured in this article) were sent to live in a nearby orphanage where she stayed until her gowelo was built. Teresa is waiting for the results of her high school exams, which in Malawi can take up to 8 months to arrive. One day, she would like to study nursing and work in a hospital.

Francisco
Francisco

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Nicholas
Nicholas

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Nicholas & his gowelo
Nicholas & his gowelo

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Nicholas is a keen gardener,

Peter
Peter

Peter (17), stands inside of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

After his parents died, Peter was found by a social worker and sent to a nearby orphanage, where he still lives today. Like several other children who are still at school, Peter rents out his gowelo, or lets relatives stay there, until he is old enough to live there himself. If Peter was president of Malawi he would “encourage people to build more houses, and lower the prices of building materials so that poor people like me can afford to live somewhere safe.”

Peter & his gowelo
Peter & his gowelo

Peter (17), sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

John
John

John (18) on his way to his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

John’s parents died in a car accident in 2005. “When I heard that I was going to help build my own house I was very happy. I asked my relatives to help me organise some bricks. “ John is waiting to hear if he has passed his high school exams, after which he would like to study art. He has a passion for music videos, and is convinced there is much room for improvement when it comes to editing and cinematography.

John & his gowelo
John & his gowelo

John (18) sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Fire damage
Fire damage

Alex’s gowelo window after a recent fire, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

After the parents of several neighbouring young children passed away 3 months ago, their relatives asked for permission to allow them to stay in Alex’s gowelo, while Alex continued to live at a local orphanage. One day, after the children had spent the evening working on their school assignments, they left without blowing out a candle and the gowelo caught fire.

Alex in his fire damaged gowelo
Alex in his fire damaged gowelo

Alex (19) sits in the bedroom of his gowelo that was damaged by a recent fire, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Wyclef
Wyclef

Wyclef (26) sits in his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

His gowelo allows Wyclef to live in the same village as his sister and take care of his sister and her 4 children after her husband passed away. Wyclef is a big football fan, and loves to watch matches on tv, or if he can afford it, in a nearby stadium.

James
James

James (19) sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

James was very young when his father died. Although his mother is still alive, she is unable to support him as women in Malawi have a far harder time finding employment than men. James is proud of his gowelo, which he decorated himself. When he is not studying to become a plumber, he likes to listen to music or the news on a portable radio which he powers with a car battery. His dream is to one day open his own business.

James on the porch
James on the porch

James (19) sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Elias
Elias

Elias (28) stands in his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Elias is the manager of Green Malata, a nearby entrepreneurial training village run by the same charity that funded the building of his gowelo. He too is an orphan who attended the same orphanage as many of the others. After catching the eye of the charity’s director, he was taken under her wing, and became intimately involved with the gowelo program, overseeing the construction of more than 70 of them.

Davidson
Davidson

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Mphatso
Mphatso

Mphatso stands in the doorway of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Like Elias, Mphatso was involved in the gowelo program from the very beginning. After Margriet Sacranie-Simons, the charities’ director, saw what he was capable of, she asked him to help organise and distribute the building materials needed to build the gowelos. Currently, Mphatso is working to improve the biogas facitilies at Green Malata, the nearby entrepreneurial training village.

Tamanda
Tamanda

Tamanda (16) stands outside of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

After her mother passed away in 2007, Tamanda was sent to a local orphanage, where she still lives. She rents out her gowelo in order to earn some extra income. When she graduates, Tamanda wants to become a biology or English teacher.

Tamanda in her gowelo
Tamanda in her gowelo

Tamanda (16) sits in her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Blessings
Blessings

Blessings sits on the porch of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Francisco
Francisco

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Tamanda outside her gowelo
Tamanda outside her gowelo

Tamanda (16) sits outside of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Door mat
Gertrude
Three sisters
Cooking
Elisa
Maureen
Happiness
Thomas outside his gowelo
Jennifer
Jennifer & her new gowelo
Thomas & his dog
Teresa
Francisco
Nicholas
Nicholas & his gowelo
Peter
Peter & his gowelo
John
John & his gowelo
Fire damage
Alex in his fire damaged gowelo
Wyclef
James
James on the porch
Elias
Davidson
Mphatso
Tamanda
Tamanda in her gowelo
Blessings
Francisco
Tamanda outside her gowelo
Door mat

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Gertrude

Gertrude (16) poses in the garden next to her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Three sisters

Sisters Gertrude (16), Elisa (14) and Maureen (11) relax at their gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

For the first time since 2005, the three sisters live in their own home. After being split apart and sent to various orphanages, they are finally able to start a new life together, as a family.

Cooking

Sisters Gertrude (16), Elisa (14) and Maureen (11) cook in the courtyard of their gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Elisa

Elisa (14) poses in the garden next to her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Maureen

Maureen (11) poses in the garden next to her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Happiness

Happiness (17) stands next to the front door of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

She has lived here since 2015. Like all the others, her gowelo has a living room, a bedroom and a storage room. Her father died when she was very young, and she was sent to an orphanage by her mother, where she remained until she was brought back to her village. Happiness now lives opposite her mother, in the community where she was born.

Thomas outside his gowelo

Thomas (19) stands on the backside of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Thomas is studying agriculture at Green Malata, a nearby entrepreneurial training village which is run by the same charity that built his gowelo. In his house he raises guinea pigs, pigeons, and cultivates fields in the surrounding countryside. “My gowelo is good because I can go to school and I do not have to worry about where I will sleep.”

Jennifer

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2017.

Jennifer & her new gowelo

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Jennifer’s gowelo was recently renovated and expanded to include a private shower and cooking area.

Thomas & his dog

Thomas (19) sits with his dog on the porch of his gowelo, Thyolo District, Malawi, 2016.

Thomas is studying agriculture at Green Malata, a nearby entrepreneurial training village which is run by the same charity that built his gowelo. In his house he raises guinea pigs, pigeons, and cultivates fields in the surrounding countryside. “My gowelo is good because I can go to school and I do not have to worry about where I will sleep.”

Teresa

Teresa (18) stands in her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

She moved into her gowelo in 2015, after she graduated from high school. After her parents passed away, Teresa, and her brother Thomas (also featured in this article) were sent to live in a nearby orphanage where she stayed until her gowelo was built. Teresa is waiting for the results of her high school exams, which in Malawi can take up to 8 months to arrive. One day, she would like to study nursing and work in a hospital.

Francisco

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Nicholas

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Nicholas & his gowelo

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Nicholas is a keen gardener,

Peter

Peter (17), stands inside of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

After his parents died, Peter was found by a social worker and sent to a nearby orphanage, where he still lives today. Like several other children who are still at school, Peter rents out his gowelo, or lets relatives stay there, until he is old enough to live there himself. If Peter was president of Malawi he would “encourage people to build more houses, and lower the prices of building materials so that poor people like me can afford to live somewhere safe.”

Peter & his gowelo

Peter (17), sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

John

John (18) on his way to his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

John’s parents died in a car accident in 2005. “When I heard that I was going to help build my own house I was very happy. I asked my relatives to help me organise some bricks. “ John is waiting to hear if he has passed his high school exams, after which he would like to study art. He has a passion for music videos, and is convinced there is much room for improvement when it comes to editing and cinematography.

John & his gowelo

John (18) sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Fire damage

Alex’s gowelo window after a recent fire, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

After the parents of several neighbouring young children passed away 3 months ago, their relatives asked for permission to allow them to stay in Alex’s gowelo, while Alex continued to live at a local orphanage. One day, after the children had spent the evening working on their school assignments, they left without blowing out a candle and the gowelo caught fire.

Alex in his fire damaged gowelo

Alex (19) sits in the bedroom of his gowelo that was damaged by a recent fire, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Wyclef

Wyclef (26) sits in his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

His gowelo allows Wyclef to live in the same village as his sister and take care of his sister and her 4 children after her husband passed away. Wyclef is a big football fan, and loves to watch matches on tv, or if he can afford it, in a nearby stadium.

James

James (19) sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

James was very young when his father died. Although his mother is still alive, she is unable to support him as women in Malawi have a far harder time finding employment than men. James is proud of his gowelo, which he decorated himself. When he is not studying to become a plumber, he likes to listen to music or the news on a portable radio which he powers with a car battery. His dream is to one day open his own business.

James on the porch

James (19) sits on the porch of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Elias

Elias (28) stands in his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Elias is the manager of Green Malata, a nearby entrepreneurial training village run by the same charity that funded the building of his gowelo. He too is an orphan who attended the same orphanage as many of the others. After catching the eye of the charity’s director, he was taken under her wing, and became intimately involved with the gowelo program, overseeing the construction of more than 70 of them.

Davidson

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Mphatso

Mphatso stands in the doorway of his gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Like Elias, Mphatso was involved in the gowelo program from the very beginning. After Margriet Sacranie-Simons, the charities’ director, saw what he was capable of, she asked him to help organise and distribute the building materials needed to build the gowelos. Currently, Mphatso is working to improve the biogas facitilies at Green Malata, the nearby entrepreneurial training village.

Tamanda

Tamanda (16) stands outside of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

After her mother passed away in 2007, Tamanda was sent to a local orphanage, where she still lives. She rents out her gowelo in order to earn some extra income. When she graduates, Tamanda wants to become a biology or English teacher.

Tamanda in her gowelo

Tamanda (16) sits in her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Blessings

Blessings sits on the porch of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Francisco

Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

Tamanda outside her gowelo

Tamanda (16) sits outside of her gowelo, Mulanje District, Malawi, 2016.

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