Since 2010 Habitat for Humanity Malawi (HFHM) has been implementing the Orphans and Other Vulnerable Children (OVC) project in Mulanje District. The project focuses on improving the living conditions of OVCs through construction of decent, durable houses and provision of related services. To date Habitat for humanity Malawi has constructed 266 houses as well as provided training for 266 caregivers and 170 community leaders in the areas of Traditional Authorities Juma, Nthiramanja and Nkando.

The Wills writing and Inheritance rights training is one of the 4 main trainings under the project and it focuses on protecting property rights of OVCs and their care givers through community mobilization, training and helping ensure that OVCs have suitable care. The training is very vital in helping beneficiaries protect their homes through Will writing and empowering them to ensure that there is a long-term security in the shelter rights of the OVCs particularly in the event of death of the caregiver.

The wills and inheritance training tackles five key areas: –
• Property rights
• Deceased estates (wills inheritance and protection act)
• The new land laws
• Prevention of domestic violence act
• Child care, protection and justice act

In 2019, HFHM engaged Mulanje DC to facilitate the property rights training under the Office of the Judiciary and Office of the Deceased Estate. During this period 24 beneficiaries and 23 local leaders were trained. After realizing that HFHM targets the most vulnerable groups that are unable to manage the annual storage fee for wills which is MK1000 every year; the Office of the DC through the Deceased Estate Office offered to store the wills of HFHM beneficiaries for free. 24 beneficiaries have collected confirmation letters from HFHM and submitted their wills at Mulanje District commissioner’s office at no cost.

37-year-old Agnes Malemia and her family were blessed to be among the 24 families that benefited from the project. Living in Ntolera village;

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Agnes is a widow who looks after three OVCs and was amongst the 24 beneficiaries who submitted their wills to Mulanje DC’s Office.
“I am so happy that I have written a will and the DC’s office has accepted it, l am now a proud mother knowing that even if I died today no one will take away this house and my other properties from my children. Thank you very much Habitat for Humanity Malawi for assisting us, we could not have afforded to do this on our own” Agnes Malemia-Project Beneficiary.

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