about malawi

Population: 18 Million

50.7% of the population lives below the poverty line

10.8% of the population is HIV+

74% of children do not complete primary school

State of emergency declared in april 2016 because of drought

government announced in may 2016 that over half its population will need food aid 

our work

We work in 7 tribal chief districts in Malawi, serving a population of around 300,000 people. With the goal of helping the poorest Malawians gain the knowledge and skills that will enable them to rely on themselves, Face-to-Face facilitates community-focused trainings that address the most pressing needs of villagers in a long-term, sustainable way. 

Patricia Batoni's victory garden ensures that she has food for her family throughout the year.


The biggest issue Malawi communities face is lack of food security. With an overdependence on maize — a non-native crop in Malawi — and with frequent floods and droughts, families often cannot grow enough food to feed themselves. Following leadership trainings, we hold organic, bio-intensive, and permaculture trainings in communities and teach heads of households how to diversify the types of crops they grow, create and utilize natural fertilizers that provide better nutrients to the soil, and relocate gardens to be closer to their homes and water sources. 

Victory Garden’s succeed because:

They are LOCAL - We work with local villagers and tribal chiefs teaching them how to create their own drought resistant home gardens!

They COST NOTHING FOR THE VILLAGER - Creating and maintaining a victory garden comes at no cost to the actual villager as families create home gardens using materials readily available and using their own land around their home. Your support covers the costs of training local facilitators and conducting garden workshops in new communities!

They are LASTING – The gardens provide families with nutrition for the foreseeable future, as well as possible food surplus to sell. Villagers grow up to 20 different vegetables and trees, helping them feed their families and lessen the risk of relying on just one crop!

Click here for more info. on our Victory Garden Campaign.

The Face-to-Face Project launched the Victory Garden Campaign to enable at-risk Malawians to stave off hunger by cultivating high-yielding home victory gardens. 


Traditional chiefs play a crucial leadership role in all The Face-to-Face Project programs, motivating and inspiring all villagers to work together and to be willing to embrace new ideas. The Face-to-Face Project’s model Victory Garden at the home of one of the top chiefs in Malawi will introduce new farming practices to hundreds of chiefs and leaders.  


Addressing the need for HIV+ role models in the villages, The Face-to-Face Project’s Strong & Positive Mother's Club of Kang'oma trains HIV+ mothers to disclose their status and teach and inspire hundreds of other villagers to overcome HIV discrimination and stigma.

HIV+Teens & Rural Youth groups as Future Leaders

The Face-to-Face Project community has several active youth groups. These groups elect officers, practice their leadership skills through community engagement and community service, participate in permaculture initiatives, and discuss real-life issues facing their community, such as HIV/AIDS, malaria and early marriage.

Youth groups play an important role in spreading knowledge — Above, a comedy about the benefits of trying new farming practices and victory gardens.

Youth groups participate in a yearly Tournament of Hope, a football and netball tournament in which youth groups play against each other. These games foster communication between communities and provide opportunities for community outreach and education on HIV testing and early marriage. 

Our Ticket to Success teen youth group, made up of 30 HIV+ youth, meets every other week in the capital city, Lilongwe. These young people often face challenges in their daily lives, determining when and how to disclose their status, communicating with their family members about the disease, and continuing to pursue their education and lead healthy and productive lives. Meetings are led by local facilitators and Face-to-Face staff members — we support participants by connecting them to medical resources, serving as mediators when necessary with their family members and helping them identify ways in which they can continue their education.

Certain members of the Ticket to Success group also play on the Rising Stars team — the first HIV+ football team. The Rising Stars participate in the larger Tournament of Hope.

1 HIV+ and 17 rural youth groups learn valuable and practical life skills, including how to play an active role in improving the quality of life in their communities. The Face-to-Face Project’s annual Tournament of Hope attracts thousands of people and engages youth in sports and various outreach activities.