ASB Good as Gold is an ASB initiative recognising, rewarding and helping wonderful people in our community. We ask the public to nominate people, who are making a real difference in their community, have grabbed hold of life against the odds or who really deserve help in a time of hardship. The recipients are featured on TV One’s Seven Sharp programme.
Devon Kilkelly is a remarkable, young New Zealander whose determination, selflessness and drive has helped to transform the lives of young children in Ngara, a small village in Malawi.
Devon’s journey started in 2015 when she worked at Ngara’s local health clinic while also teaching at the local secondary school and nursery. At the time, the nursery school had large holes in the floor, no toilets and the children only had five toys to share between all 20 them. Overall, the nursery was an unsafe space that offered no stimulation for the young – and eager - students.
While in Ngara, Devon began the task of improving the nursery for the children. Since returning to New Zealand, Devon has worked hard to fundraise to completely transform the nursery. Not only does it have the addition of drop-hole toilets and a hole-less floor, it is now an interactive, stimulating and safe environment for the children. She has also ensured each child is given a bowl of porridge a day.
Word of the improvements to the nursery quickly spread and now 90 children a day attend.
So far, Devon and her volunteer partner Daisy have managed to fund improvements to the Ngara nursery and porridge for the children thanks to supportive friends, family and locals from Greymouth, her hometown. To ensure the children remain fed, she is also attempting to raise a minimum of $1500 per year, plus an additional $450 this year to help rebuild another deteriorated building down the road from the original nursery to make space for more children.
To help Devon and the community she loves, we’ve given her $10,000 to spend as she chooses on her work in Malawi. She intends to build a playground for the children and continue to fund their food and activities.
Devon has also set up a Givealittle page to help fundraise money so that she can continue to support the nursery school in Malawi.
You can help Devon by donating on the Givealittle page.