A World Bank delegation visited the DREAM centre of Mthengo wa Ntenga in Lilongwe on Thursday, 2 November. The delegation was headed by the institution’s managing director, Juan José Daboub and their visit was part of a relationship of contacts and collaboration formed some time ago between the Community of Sant’Egidio and the Bank.
In Mthengo, Daboub and his companions paused briefly in the reception area of the DREAM centre where they met patients who were waiting, personnel and activists. We were able to talk to them about the programme, stressing the efforts we are making to reach people scattered across rural areas, who often live several hours by walk away from the health centre where we work.
The World Bank delegation listened to Pasemu as she told her story. Our activist described her journey from being a sick woman, without hope, to her new status of being an active part of the centre’s coordination, a communicator – as she loves to say – of the “soul” of DREAM to patients. No one is condemned, life goes on, she tells them. It is possible to have faith in the future and she bears witness to this.
Daboub thanked everyone. He had favourable words of appreciation for the DREAM programme and said this was the type of initiative the World Bank absolutely should support.
The next day, out of the blue, two members of the delegation, officials in Malawi, returned to ask if they could meet again, and more at length, Pasemu and the other activists. They wanted to better understand their experience, holding it to be of great value. They too were captivated by the dream that has become so real: the DREAM programme.