Who we are and
what we do

“We work with primary schools in Malawi to improve the literacy levels of thousands of underprivileged children across the country. These children are required to be fluent in the English language by the time they reach Year 5, when all subjects are taught and examined in English. CharChar has developed a literacy programme to support the Malawi National Curriculum and the National Reading Program (NRP). The programme focusses on developing the phonemic awareness of teachers and pupils through the delivery of phonics workshops, on-site training and support to our own volunteer literacy support specialist teachers and government teachers alike

CharChar trains Literacy Support Specialist teachers (qualified Malawian graduate teachers) who volunteer to teach for one year at CharChar supported government primary schools. These teachers deliver phonics centred English lessons daily. They also take small groups of children throughout the day for additional phonics based activities, to reinforce class based learning. Additionally, CharChar Literacy Support teachers run a CharChar library for the whole school. CharChar also provides a range of teaching and learning resources, supplementary reading books, and a colour-illustrated dictionary for primary school children.

Watch the video

Std 1 girls excited to turn the pages of their first ever storey books!

The reality of life for children in rural Malawi can be harsh. Our creative writing competition revealed tales of child abuse and dreams of becoming an agent for change in their communities. Often there is family pressure on young girls to leave school and marry, and on boys to abandon their education to work in the family fields, or seek manual work in the city.

However there is also a lot of good news! At the school where our writing competition took place, a record 68 children sat their Primary School Leaving Exam, 21 of which were selected to attend government secondary schools (chosen out of 12 schools in the educational zone).

For the first time ever at this school, 2 children were selected for Government Boarding School. One of them was Kezziah, a girl who won first prize in the CharChar creative writing competition. Kezziah was the only girl out of the 12 schools in the zone to gain a place at the highly coveted Government Boarding School.

This is a first for this school and a fantastic achievement when compared with the school’s historically poor performance in past years. Just one year ago these results were very disappointing indeed, as only 4 children were selected to government secondary school and none to boarding school. This is clear evidence that the CharChar Literacy Programme and resources, together with the dedication of hard working teachers, makes a positive difference to thousands of children’s lives.

Story written by girl
Story written by student
Educational poster

Education posters​

12 different versions including; letter sounds, telling the time, prepositions, shapes, times tables, map of the world, African Seasons of the Year and many others

CharChar Dictionary

A unique English/Chichewa children’s illustrated colour dictionary.


CharChar dictionary
CharChar books

Supplementary story books

Beautiful, colour graded English and Chichewa story books from Pre-Readers through to top level ‘E”.  These unique supplementary readers contain over 80 stories, most of which are in an African context.

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