About UsEmpowering and Educating Children through Active & Creative PLAY We EMPOWER, ENCOURAGE and LOVE – we see you. Kusewera means “to play” in Chichewa, the language of Malawi, Africa Watch our video here! Mission and History of Kusewera : Kusewera’s mission is to empower and educate children in impoverished countries through active and creative PLAY. We organize activities such as sports, dance, music, art and more. We are not a “voluntourism” organization but we do create affordable humanitarian service trips for people of all walks of life, so that they can personally help implement our Kusewera Empowerment & Educational Program (K.E.E.P.) with their areas of expertise and passions. This sustainable year-round program empowers the children to learn, laugh, play. Our hope is for the children to pursue goals, dream for a better future and be positive leaders in their community. We are people helping people help themselves. Our current focus areas are in Malawi, Africa and the Philippines. Our current project is our Community Center & Sports Complex in the Lilongwe area of Malawi.In 2008, Kusewera founder, Karen Osborn, took a trip to Africa, that changed her life. She worked with kids at Mtendere Village Orphanage near Lilongwe, Malawi, conducting sport clinics. She realized her passion to help these kids set and attain goals for their future. She wanted to create a way for anyone to be able to take a humanitarian trip, and make a difference in the lives of kids in need across the globe using active and creative PLAY. Kusewera was formed in 2010 and began working as a fiscal sponsored program under a non-profit organization. In June 2012, after taking several groups to Malawi, Karen decided to make Kusewera its own recognized, non-profit 501(c)(3).Kusewera’s goalsEducation – the children learn life skills such as leadership, discipline, perseverance, goal-setting, sportsmanship, teamwork, focus, and healthy living. etc.
Empowerment – Giving these children the ability to see possibilities they haven’t ever thought of, dreaming for a better future and showing them that they have a choice to make a difference in their community.
Encouragement – When a child can see, feel and know that someone cares, they strive to do better and be better.
Question: Is Kusewera a religious organization or connected to a specific church? Why or why not?
When starting Kusewera, I wanted to be sure to involve people from all walks of life. I believe everyone has something to teach and share, no matter their background, faith or life’s journey. There are various limitations to certain categories in the non-profit sector that I did not want to impose on our mission. As such, Kusewera is not a religious non-profit nor connected to a specific church. I am a Christian, our board members happen to be Christians and many of our committee members and volunteers are as well. Other valuable committee members and long-term volunteers are not, but all are full of love and have a strong belief in the mission of Kusewera, with amazing insight to share. I specifically noted in our policies that we do not tolerate hate, prejudice or words and acts of discrimination or language that supports anything of the like. Promoting an ideology that doesn’t encourage unity and inclusion is prohibited. I firmly believe that no matter what ones faith is.
Malawi is predominately a Christian country at 52%, with 19% Catholics, 12% Muslims and 17% categorized as other. We have always welcomed Christian groups and pastors who want to schedule activities such as lead a bible study, vacation bible school or other faith based activities. No volunteer is required to participate but all are encouraged to join in when interested! A lot of the cultural songs the kids and adults sing in the villages are faith-based. Many Malawians have Christian beliefs that lean conservative. Kusewera aims to observe a more conservative perspective out of respect, when conducting programs and activities for both the children and adults we serve.