To them that’s how life is like. There is nothing they can do to change their present situation. Life to them means struggling to find basic needs. They just came to accept this fact. Every five years they vote for people who they hope will bring change, but nothing changes. Who cares?
Every morning they wake up from their sleeping mats to be greeted by the sight of their poorly dressed and hunger stricken children. At times one meal per day strategically prepared to cover all the three meals does the trick. Not that they are too busy to eat but availability of food to be prepared thrice.
Farming, yes, the God given talent is all there is to give them the much needed food. But with the prices of fertilizer that they cannot afford, they harvest very little from a large piece of land. Subsidies are there but they target a few people who have connections.
Who cares what they dress? As long as they cover their nakedness, fashion to them means nothing. There is no money to buy the latest Pierre Cardin suit. Freely they walk in tatters and some second hand clothes sold cheaply at various trading centres.
Education, yes their kids need to be educated. Thank God primary school is free, but that’s where it ends. Secondary schools have become very expensive for them. To buy uniform, pay fees, and buy other needed resources for learning is a big burden to them. Even those that are lucky to have finished their secondary school are still expecting to be fed by them. Who is going to give them a job? Forget about college. It’s a luxury very few can afford.
This is what life means to them. Days turn to months and months to years with little changes. Only governments change but sufferring remains. Young men turn to fathers at a tender age catching the virus in the process. Girls as young as 15 become wives and mothers. Children suffer from malnutrition and other related diseases.
On paper, policies, strategies and goals are made but very little impacts the poor masses. They continue suffering every day of their lives. There is no better explanation to this kind of life. Who is wrong or what should be done to change this? Poverty is here to stay if nobody cares for these fellow country men.
Pictures taken by Caitriona Rogerson and Natasha Fitzpatrick in Blantyre, Malawi