< FAQs – Mamie Martin Fund


Some questions that are frequently asked about our work and its context.

Who was Mamie Martin? Mamie Martin and her husband, Jack, were Scottish missionaries in what was then Nyasaland, Central Africa. Mamie spent much of her time supporting girls and women to continue the education that was cut short at school because the girls were needed in the home. The MMF was set up to continue that work. More history >>>

What ‘support’ do you give schoolgirls in Malawi? We pay their school fees through the school or the educational organisation, such as the Diocese of Karonga and the CCAP Synod of Livingstonia Education Department. We pay for essential extras too, through our Country Director there, who also provides motivational and emotional support to ensure the girls’ wellbeing.

Is education free in Malawi? Secondary school education is not free in Malawi. All families must pay school fees for children after the end of primary school. This is typically age 13 onwards. As well as school fees, they also have to cover the costs of transport, school supplies (pens and notebooks) and uniform, which is compulsory.

Why is girls’ education important? Girls are less likely to attend secondary school and less likely to complete than boys in Malawi. Girls’ education has hugely beneficial impact on the individual (see our stories). Research from the World Bank demonstrates that they are less likely to be child brides, future earnings are higher, they have smaller families and healthier children. Investing in girl-child education benefits that girl, her community and future children. For detailed data on school attendance and completion rates by gender see https://data.unicef.org/topic/education/secondary-education/

Are boarding schools elite? No, the boarding schools where we support girls are grant-aided schools, run by educational organisations and part-funded by the government. They are essential for the safety and attendance of the girls.

Does the MMF rely on donations to pay for school fees? Yes, we do. Our core funding is from regular donations by individuals. Occasionally we are asked to manage a block of money for a time-limited period and these places are identified as such, e.g. the Thompson Fund at Embangweni. Read more here >>>>

How do you work with schools and the girls to pay their fees? We send money for fees directly to the educational providers. The girls to be supported by MMF are selected by the school on the basis of need only. When we support a girl we undertake to continue that support until she completes her secondary education at that school.

Will my donation have a direct impact on the recipient? – yes, it will help us to pay her fees. You may indicate that you wish your donation to be allocated to the Ready to Learn Fund or to one of the funds we manage, such as the Thompson Fund.

Who are your partners in Malawi? CCAP Synod of Livingstonia Education Department, the Diocese of Karonga and Mchengautuba Community Day Secondary School. Read more >>>