The man behind the Comb
On our recent trip to Malawi, we happily bumped into Ephraim Mataka.
The Chair of our Trustees first met Ephraim in 2010, they met at Church in Chilomoni Township; Tony Smith was delighted to meet someone as small as he is and he happily shared his clothes with Ephraim who had very little of his own.
Ephraim began to make Rosary Beads for the Church as a way of earning a little income. He lives on his own in Chilomoni and never seems to need much, but earning a living is vital in Malawi where there is no welfare state.
It’s been a while since we saw him so it was a relief to see him looking so well and happy. We were also delighted to find that he’s taken up recycling! When we asked what he was up to, he showed us some fantastic hair-combs that he’s been making from off-cuts of water pipe. It’s a tiny enterprise, he’s working from an old shipping container shaded by ancient trees just on the edge of the township. We purchased his entire stock of hair combs, he only had 40 but he was so pleased as that one transaction will cover his living expenses for a couple of weeks at least.
Each comb is unique, made with love, and each purchase of a comb makes a big difference to the life of this gentle, quiet man.