A mother is a mentor. She is a world to a child and it is she who protects, nourishes and bestows her child with love and care. It is she who sacrifices in life to give.
There are many reported cases of women being victims but who remain strong for the love of their children and relatives. That is true in Kasungu as well. Victoria Dzanjo is just one good example of women who have gone through extremely tough times but came out as stars. Victoria, born on 7th April, 1959 met her late husband Mr. Livingstone while working at Likuni hospital way back in 1980. She was working as a female ward attendant and Mr. Livingstone was just a mere farmer who came to visit his sick sister one day when he met Victoria and they ended up getting married.
Livingstone married the woman because of the love and care she showed to his sick sister while at Likuni mission hospital but little did he know that his own relatives would turn against the lady he called his wife. “We were happily married in 1981 and life was normal until my husband’s death in 1984. They used to call me a good daughter in-law for the family”, explains Victoria who is now living with her two daughters. According to her, life wasn’t easy soon after the death of her husband. The relatives to her late husband came and took away all that she and her husband had accumulated together. The relatives thought her husband had died of HIV/AIDS and that she too would not live long and so they forced Victoria to return to her parents with nothing but her children.
Victoria has a deep devotion and knows sacrifice and pain. She is a living example of mothers with endless and unselfish and enduring sense of love and responsibility. “They took away an ox-cart, some livestock and a one tone Mazda vehicle. They gave me a small piece of land for cultivation, forgetting that their son (Livingstone) had left with me five children who look up to me for their care. And so I summoned them to the Village chief who also showed little interest in helping me and my children”, said Victoria who is now a member of Luntha Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA).
It is a trend by most of the chiefs in Kasungu to not assist victims like Victoria and her children even though Malawi government policy states that all properties be shared among the deceased children and wife. It is the sacrifice for the welfare of her children that pushed Victoria to remain in the village and start a small business using the VSLA money which she also invested in her farm. She has also been involved in various businesses of selling doughnuts/flitters, craft work materials and selling second hand clothes. It is her hard work that showed the people who first saw her as a useless woman who could not live this long that they were wrong. Those doubters are now coming back begging for her support.
She never failed in her commitment to her children and even though her heart was broken, she maintained the relationship with the relatives of her late husband despite them being greedy and leaving her with nothing but her children and a drive to succeed. This shows how deep a mother’s love and passion can be.