“We can all be the change we want to see in the world”, is the mantra of Change 1s Life founder Edmilson Angelo. Starting out independently in 2013, Edmilson campaigned across Westminster University where he did his bachelor degree, urging students to donate unwanted clothes and other essentials which were to be distributed by Edmilson himself to street vendors, orphanages and homeless shelters in Angola. In less than one year, Edmilson’s vision for effectively combating poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa already proved likely and in 2014 his vision turned into an official UK-registered charity. With over 55,000 beneficiaries, teams established in Angola, Namibia, Mozambique and South Africa as well as management operational offices in France and Spain, a constitution was formed with the ultimate goal to expand the work of the charity throughout the all sub-Saharan Africa.
Mission Statement from Charity
‘Change 1’s Life is aiming to find practical,dynamic and affordable strategies to combat poverty in a world where the rich gets richer and poor get poorer. Even with the growth of non profit organisations and charities, poverty levels are not declining, in fact it seems to be going up, and this is a clear sign that there is a gap that needs to be filled in regards to poverty reduction. Our mission is to feed the hungry, educate the poor, house the homeless and comfort the downcast. We have and continue to develop a network of young individuals around the world to unite forces to influence local and international poverty reduction strategies by demonstrating how the youth plays an important role in bringing about change starting from one of the poorest areas of the world. All our work and decision making process is done with participation of our beneficiaries, including children’
Since the launch of his charity, Edmilson has been invited by the United Nations to complete an internship in Geneva in order to gain first hand experience in working for the biggest NGO’s (National Governmental Organisation) in the world (UNAids, UNHMRC, and World Bank). Such major achievements by someone who simply had a passion and drive to improve the standard of living of others, is a reminder to everyone that we all have the ability to change at least a single person’s life for the better. As quoted by Mother Theresa, “If you can’t feed a hundred people, feed one”. Yet Change One’s Life has astoundingly expanded to the point of impacting communities, with its plans of building a school in an Angolan district in 2018 and also installing solar lights in rural areas through its newest project (ProjectLight). Below is a small insight to the work of C1L in Angola and Namibia, where the Charity works diligently to cater for the needs of the communities.
C1L Angola – C1L has established a warehouse in Cazenga, Luanda, where food and clothes are sorted out for distribution across Angola. The charity is committed to ensuring that the less privileged children in Angola have access to food, water, education and basic health care. This project expands across 12 orphanages from 5 different provinces; Luanda, Benguela, Malanje, Lubango and Huambo. Clothes, food and scholar donations from various parts of the world, are stored at a warehouse in Cazenga, and a warehouse in Luanda, are are then distributed to families living on less than $2 a day. To date, C1L have distributed 1500kgs of food and clothes to over 20,000 children and families throughout Angola.
The deadly battle against epidemics such as Malaria and HIV/Aids is also another issue C1L aims to target, portraying the commitment of the charity to improve the standard of life with a fierce focus on all aspects of daily living. Due to the lack of hospitals in many parts of Angola, more than 70% of the population struggle to access basic healthcare, contributing to the high mortality rate with life expectancy reaching only 51 years. To address this issue, C1L have set up a 24/7 open window department in its warehouse, where the local community can pick up free condoms, mosquito nets and basic medication such as painkillers and vitamins. In the face of natural disasters, C1L has also shown its commitment to supporting victims of such catastrophes. In March 2015, heavy rain hit two parts of the most populated provinces of Angola (Lubito & Luanda) killing more than 100 people, most of them children. Thousands of people were made homeless. C1L made a clothes and food appeal for the victims and provided shelter for those who lost their homes.
If you can’t feed a hundred people, feed one.
C1L Namibia – In Namibia, young children are often forced to work to provide food for an entire family, enticing them to engage in criminal activity. C1L not only aims to feed, house and educate those in need, but also comfort the downcast too. The charity is managed by young individuals, who also provide counselling for the deprived youth. C1L aims to stimulate a communal aspect of love and friendship where difficult circumstances leave little hope to form abundant and flourishing societies . To date C1L have also distributed over 18,000 kg of food and clothes to various orphanages, homes and hospitals in Windhoek, Oshakati, Rundu and Swakopmund. As a result of the high level of HIV victims, the charity has also provided crucial lifesaving education to protect the Namibian population from serious diseases such HIV/Aids, Malaria, Typhoid fever and Hepatitis A.
Edmilson Angelo has agreed to the further promotion of Change 1’s Life throughout RHUL’s media outlets, insisting he will appear on Insanity Radio in 2018 to give an interview about the challenges, successes and future of C1L. He promises an intimate interview focusing on the root and end goal of C1L, and he hopes to shed light on the fact that we all have the ability to achieve great things. Look out for him!
Follow C1L on Social Media –
Instagram – change1slife
Twitter – @change1slife
To find out more on how you can volunteer and take part visit http://www.change1slife.co.uk/