In today’s world, there are people who are content with going to the theatre to watch a play that others have written, listen to lines that others speak and be caught up in events that others have determined. Likewise, there are other people who aren’t content with being spectators and thus, strive to be a major part of the play. They work hard to make their presence felt and contribute their thoughts, words and actions towards the success of the play. Among the latter, is 2012 MILEAD Fellow Maggie B.B. Phiri, from Malawi,who did not let the curtain fall without her appearance on the stage.
Participating in the MILEAD 2012 leadership training institute in Accra, Ghana was like being in a theatre for Maggie. With every session that was presented, watched and listened to, she was highly motivated to transform her status from spectator to actress. Maggie, a final year student of Agriculture Biotechnology, majoring in Genetics at Alexandria University represented Egypt at the training. She returned to the land of pyramids equipped with great skills and the determination to assume leadership roles in the change-making process. Few weeks after her return, she was honored to share her MILEAD experience with the African League of Young Masters (ALYM), an organization of which she is the Malawian Female ambassador in the realm of African Scholars of the Alexandria University under the Bibliotheca Alexandrina. From a host of subjects presented, the environmental issues caught the attention of her audience, who were especially fascinated by the solar cooker concept. This was taught to her by Faustine Odaba, also known as “Mama Solar”, a renowned Kenyan lady working on natural resource and waste management.
ALYM also opened doors for Maggie to learn and witness some of the environmental challenges the world is currently faced with, through visits to some of the areas affected by climate change in Eastern Alexandria. She later compiled a report on the impact of climate change in the places visited and beyond, which can be accessed on the ALYM website.
With this experience and exposure, she was approached a few weeks later, with an offer to participate at the 10th anniversary of one of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina Science Centers with the Youth for Environmental Sustainability and Understanding. There, she had the chance to showcase the solar cooker as one of the tools for creating and maintaining a sustainable environment, while sharing the skills she had acquired at the MILEAD training. The presentation was quite interesting and earned her the opportunity to be interviewed by some Malaysian Visiting Scholars.
Following her passion in raising hope and inspiration to youths, Maggie currently volunteers at the African Hope Learning Centre (AHLC) in Cairo. She works with young refugee youngsters from Sudan, Uganda, Eritrea, Ghana and Ethiopia, in the nutritional and academic sector with a solid base in spiritual mentor-ship She strongly believes that it is through our service that the less fortunate can be enriched to live fuller lives.
Maggie is grateful to ALYM and the Moremi Initiative for Women’s Leadership in Africa for offering her an acting stage that has allowed her to serve and inspire others.