A retired Moray high school teacher embarked on a mercy mission to a poverty-stricken African country ravaged by flash floods.
Elizabeth Stewart has close links to Malawi and has visited the country regularly since 2008 thanks to Forres Academy’s involvement with a school there.
In the last decade, she has helped to raise thousands of pounds to create classrooms and an eight-acre garden at Luchenza CDSS.
After hearing about the flooding, which caused widespread devastation in the south of Malawi, Ms Stewart flew out at the end of March to see what she could do to help.
Thankfully, the school and garden had escaped major damage, with only the roof needing repairs.
However, Ms Stewart had heard about homes being destroyed in another part of Malawi called Mulanje and ventured there to offer assistance.
When she arrived, she discovered 220 families sheltering in one school due to their houses being swept away by the rain and with no access to any food.
Ms Stewart immediately rushed into action.
She said: “I started to find smaller primary schools and nurseries off the beaten track and one of them was called Manadidi where I found 250 people with no shelter and nothing to eat living in there.
“It was a tough place to reach by foot, so I borrowed a motorbike and bought maize and soya supplies for the families before transporting them to the villagers going back and forth on this bike.”
Ms Stewart was helped on her mission by local primary school teacher Emmanuel Kapungwa who she regards as a member of her second family in Malawi.
As members of the Friends of Luchenza Action Group (FLAG), they raise funds all year round to send supplies and carry on their projects in Malawi.
The former school teacher hopes to carry on going back to Africa every year to see how her adopted community are getting on and wants to raise awareness of some of the issues affecting families and children there.
She added: “It is great to go out there and see what these people achieve with so little and, when they see me, they always say thanks for coming and offer you food first despite having so little themselves. It really is a lesson in humanity.”
To find out how you can get involved with FLAG, visit their Facebook page.