Dec 15, 2016 #1
A life time opportunity for me and hopefully for Malawi
I am planning to apply for Commonwealth Shared Scholarships programme for 2017/2018 year. I am looking for honest opions and guidance on how best I can present my Home Country Benefit Prompt.
You are advised in your statement to describe how your plan of study or research relates to development in your sector and country. Please say how, on your return, you will apply your new skills and qualifications, and what outcomes you will hope to achieve. This could usefully be related to a national development priority or objective. Please also suggest how the impact of the potential benefits of your work might be measured.
During my study for undergraduate degree at the University of Malawi, I have been observing with keen interest the most pressing problems that hinder Malawi's social-economic development for decades. Water related diseases, shortages of potable water in both cities and the rural areas, environmental degradation at an alarming rate, floods that lead to food insecurity, increased poverty levels, and insufficient power generation due to low water levels in the country's fresh water bodies, including electricity generating Shire River. Further, Malawi lacks water and environmental data that can inform decision makers in both government departments and private sector working in water and environmental areas. These problems have made achievement of the national and international goals such as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS II) and other development visions a nightmare for Malawi.
I believe that the above problems are largely attributed to insufficient trained experts in water and environmental management in Malawi who can contribute to the sustainable development of the nation. It is imperative, therefore, for the country to have more experts in this key sector if the country is to address problems the citizenry faces on a daily basis. Having more experts in the water and environmental sector will help Malawi improve water resource management, increase access to safe water that will eventually reduce water-related diseases, improve hydropower generation for industrial activities and service delivery, and also the economic status of Malawians at large.
The Commonwealth Shared Scholarship programme is a life time opportunity for me to contribute to the development of my country, Malawi. The scholarship will afford me an opportunity to acquire essential skills in water and environmental management which I believe will transform Malawi's water and environmental sector and become a shining example in the Sab-Saharan countries. This scholarship will give me an opportunity to contribute to sound management of this sector, thus unlocking the development potential for Malawi as stated in the Malawi Development Growth Strategy (MDGS II), the recently adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), objectives of development partners such as DfID and local Non-Governemental Organisations operating in Malawi. One of the crucial skills that I hope to acquire given the scholarship to study Water and Environmental Management at the University of Bristol is research in water and environment. As such, I intend to carry out research works after my award in Malawi in collaboration with various institutions to help bridge the data gap currently manifesting itself in the country. My immediate contribution to the development of this sector will be the publications of research work. This will be the first way to measure my contributions.
Water is one of the valuable resources that, if managed properly, can steer the social-economic development that the Malawi government and all the citizenry aspire the most. My further training will contribute to improved management and provision of potable water, reduced water-related diseases, and better conservation of the water and the environment in Malawi.