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Malawi Appeal 2019

Based upon news reports and direct feedback from our missionaries in the field we are highly concerned about the devastating effects of Cyclone Idai on the people in Malawi, as well as our missionary work in the country. The government reports that 925,000 people have been impacted by the Cyclone and by the heavy rainfall and flooding in early March.


  • Current reports indicate that at least 56 people have died in Malawi and 577 have been injured.


  • There is no running water. The disruption of water treatment and expected contamination of the water supply has produced a concern of a potential outbreak of waterborne diseases such as cholera or typhoid.


  • More than 83,000 people are estimated to be displaced because their homes have been partially or completely destroyed, leaving the inhabitants in need of housing assistance. Household items and clothing have been swept away. Most of the displaced are living in camps or makeshift sites at schools.


  • Many of these sites do not have sufficient toilets or bathing facilities for the numbers staying there.


  • In a country highly dependent upon agriculture, this year’s crops have been wiped out and seeds for next year’s crops have been seriously impacted. This is a country already recognized as one of the 10 poorest in the world. This disaster is considered by many experts as a long-lasting humanitarian crisis.


  • There is no electricity, as well as no phones or internet.


We have established a Cyclone Idai Fund to give our missionaries the financial resources to provide basic necessities such as food, shelter, clothing, clean water and medical supplies to the people in their community. We assure you that 100% of your donation will go directly to assisting these people in need.


Saint Patrick Father Michael Moore, in our Chicago Office, has been placed in charge of the fund. Father Moore spent 10 years (1984-1994) as a missionary in Malawi. He lived through the 1989 drought and floods in Malawi and knows first-hand about the experience of helping people dealing with a natural disaster. People who are already considered among the poorest in the world. Father Moore will work directly with Saint Patrick Bishop John Ryan in Mzuzu, Malawi, who will help to identify need and channel our funds to respond to those needs.


If you wish to contribute:

  • Please send a check, made payable to St Patrick Fathers, Ref: Cyclone Idai and mail it to:

The Cyclone Idai Fund

Saint Patrick’s Missionary Society

8422 West Windsor Avenue

Chicago, ILL 60656-4252

  • ​Or donate online today by clicking this button.




No contribution is too small.


Thank you for considering our request.

Fr Michael Madigan 

Fr Michael Moore


Nchalo Camp 2.jpg

Report from Malawi March 2019

St Patrick’s Bishop John Ryan, Bishop of Mzuzu, Malawi, received the following report from Bishop Martin Mtumbuka, Bishop of Karonga, who visited Nchalo Camp in Chikwawa, Malawi on March 24th, 2019.

This afternoon I went to Chikwawa to see some of the damage and suffering caused by the recent floods. Bishop Peter Musukwa took me to Nchalo camp which is the largest one on the west bank of River Shire. I was literally shocked with what I saw there:


  1. About 3,000 evacuees are crammed in a tiny muddy spot with only 3 tents.

  2. Because the tents are pitched on a very low lying area rain water flows into the tents creating 1 inch of mud inside the tents where evacuees sleep. They literally sleep in the mud.

  3. The poor women prepare food in an open area within the camp and when it rains all the cooking is disrupted as the fire extinguished and all firewood soaked in water.

  4. They have only 4 latrines which are completely full.

  5. Evacuees have very few lamps and at night they can hardly see anything.

  6. So far Muslim groups have been the most frequent providers of relief items.

  7. This morning one Pentecostal church gave a couple of bags of floor.

  8. As we were about to leave the camp one Muslim group arrived with some bags of maize at the camp. Evacuees rushed to the truck in hundreds to get some food.

  9. Old evacuees sit motionless in the mud waiting for some help whenever it will come.

  10. Chikwawa CADECOM (Catholic Development Commission in Malawi) is trying to deal with the situation to the best of their ability.


A visit to Nchalo camp should move even the coldest heart to compassion. The affected people live in deplorable conditions. We have to do something about this. I feel very sorry for the evacuees and very sincerely thank Bishop Musukwa for all the effort he is making to assist the evacuees. 

Bishop Martin Mtumbuka

Bishop of Karonga, Malawi

March 2019

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