Behind the scenes: Life Swap Adventure

From our office in Malawi we have been following the UK’s amazing reaction to BBC 2’s Life Swap Adventure documentary and thought we would give you a behind the scenes view!

*Latest Update* Elizabeth spoke to George today for 20 mins and he is really enjoying his course- it is 4 weeks long and teaching him key business skills. George has been 'jumping up and down with happiness' about all the support and 'has a very big vision for the project and would like the donations to benefit the whole community...' More to come soon.

Back in August 2016 we worked with the team from the BBC to help film the documentary

As well as organising logistics for John’s trip to Malawi, we helped the BBC find a Malawian candidate who would be lucky enough to take on the life swap adventure. George was an obvious candidate thanks to his excellent English, friendly family, curious nature and his loveable character. It wasn’t easy though, George had an expired passport, no UK visa and lived 3 hours drive away from our office! During the run-up to George’s departure, our General Manager, Elizabeth, who’s coincidentally from Essex, travelled to Johannesburg with George for the express UK visa service. The South African woman who took the application said how she couldn’t believe that she was speaking to a future star! How right she turned out to be! After 3 days of hanging out in Johannesburg together waiting for the passport, George received his UK visa and Elizabeth waved goodbye to him at the airport, anxious and excited for him about his blindfolded introduction to her home country!

2 weeks later George was back in our office with the same glorious smile on his face telling stories of bee keeping, supermarkets and friendly British people. Jeremy Finnis who hosted George at his farm in the UK decided to donate towards George’s bee keeping dream. This was also boosted by a donation from the BBC towards the start-up costs. George found a beekeeping training programme at community level in Balaka, near to his home area of Ntcheu. George’s training is 4 weeks long and starts tomorrow, 1st June 2017. He will learn how to keep bees, how to build beehives and how to produce honey.

The response to George’s appearance on the TV programme has been incredible, over £3,000 has been raised so far by the British public, with #LifeSwapAdventure and #bees4Malawi trending on social media. We will be managing the distribution of the donation and completing needs assessments following George’s training depending on what further areas need funding.

This was George's response when we told him: “I’ve been highly indebted and marvelled for the British positive response to the felt need. Therefore I say thank you to the entire public for the unconditional support which they’ve rendered to me disregarding the geographical barrier. Thanks so much. George”


Stay tuned to George’s journey, join us on social media - Facebook  Twitter  Instagram  Pinterest  YouTube  and keep up to date with news and developments across our projects in Malawi.

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