One of the pioneer Mobilisation Corps of Malawi (MCM) volunteers, Archangel Petro, is a man who has also flown from a low pitch to the sky.
His story, partly, mirrors that of Chikondi of Madisi in Dowa. Born from Njoka Village in Traditional Authority Dzoole in Dowa, he too lived in an environment that had fewer opportunities.
It was not until 2006 that Creative Cente for Community Mobilisation (CRECCOM) launched a Primary School Support Project in the district that he treaded new terrain. He was one of the 15 pioneer volunteers.
After the two-week training with CRECCOM, he was posted to Tchawale Cluster where he implemented activities at Mdwala, Tchawale and Longwani primary schools. He stayed with the organisation until the project phased out in 2008.
As he interacted with community members, school heads and other duty-bearers, he started thinking about the possibility of getting a chance to work with the organisation.
That is why in 2008 he attended interviews in Kasungu for a position of office assistant that CRECCOM had advertised for the Integrated Child Labour Elimination Project which was implemented in Dowa and Kasungu in 2009.
The interview was attended by four people—three volunteers under MCM and an outsider—in the end, Petro emerged successfully.
But the project phased out and CRECCOM launched another called Child Labour Elimination Actions for Real Change which was implemented in Mchinji, Ntchisi, Dowa and Rumphi.
So, from 2011 to 2015, he was posted to work as an office assistant in Mchinji.
“In the process, there came a sister project called Youth in Action [YIA]. So, I worked under YIA from 2015 to 2018. From July 1 2015 to July 31 2016 I worked as an office assistant under YIA. From August to March 31, 2018, I worked as a community mobilizer in T/A Mavwere in Mchinji under YIA,” he states.
But Petro, like Mbewe, upgraded while he was working with CRECCOM. First, he got a certificate in Community Development from The Polytechnic Continuing Education Centre in 2015. Then, in 2017, he pursued a diploma in the same at Namitete Development College in Lilongwe. In 2018 he attained an advanced diploma in Community Development at The Polytechnic.
In all this, he says he thanks CRECCOM.