Country Stats

  • Population: 20,325,290
  • Rank in UN's Human Development Index: 172 of 189
  • Percentage of population living below the poverty line: 71% of Malawians
  • Percentage of population living in extreme poverty: 21% of Malawians
  • Malawians classified as food insecure: 1.1 million people

Concern's Impact

  • People helped to improve food and nutrition security: 100,000 people
  • People reached through COVID-19 response program: over 36,000 people
  • People reached through Concern's Graduation Program: 855 families in 2020

Malawi is one of the countries where Concern’s Graduation program has helped to improve financial security as well as harvest yields. We also have an emergency response and dual-focus on education and gender equality.

Malawi is ranked 172 out of 189 in the United Nations’ Human Development Index, with over 71% of Malawians living below the poverty line (including an estimated 20% currently living in extreme poverty).

There's a difference in the way women lived then and now. We used to depend on men to do everything. But now women are independent, we are able to support our own needs...and now we are even able to buy trousers for the husband!

Esime Jenaia, Climate Smart Agriculture participant, Chituke village

We work with many of these families to support livelihood development without risking their economic security, offering relevant skills training including Climate Smart Agriculture practices that respond to climate change, and promote gender equality in all of our areas of work.

Climate change-related emergencies, including drought and floods, are regular events in Malawi. In March 2019, Cyclone Idai hit the country, directly affecting almost one million people, and killing 60. The country was already suffering from high rates of chronic malnutrition, with a stunting rate of 37.1% among children under 5 years old. Malawi’s population has grown by 35% over the past ten years to 17.1 million, placing huge stress on land and crop production.

Gender inequality remains a major challenge in the country, with Malawi ranking 145 out of 159 countries on the UN’s Gender Inequality Index.

Latest Achievements

Emergency Response

With the support of Irish Aid, we launched one of the first COVID-19 response programs in a highly-populated suburb of Lilongwe, which reached over 36,000 people through critical WASH supplies and trainings on COVID-19 prevention measures and protection issues. We also trained over 100 key health workers on prevention practices while ensuring they are equipped with PPE.


After completing the pilot of our Graduation with 200 families, we entered Phase 2 of the program, working with an additional 855 families as of April 2020. The program supported participating families as they built skills and small businesses, linking in with village savings and loans groups (VSLAs), and providing trainings in skills such as Climate Smart Agriculture and marketing. In November 2019, we signed up another 867 families for Phase 3.

Health & Nutrition

Last year, we helped over 100,000 people improve their food and nutrition security through conservation agriculture, seed distribution, and crop diversification advice and services. Additionally, we supported over 57,000 people affected by March 2019's Cyclone Idai with seeds and tools to rebuild their livelihoods and recover lost crops.

Two Malawian women demonstrating a COVID-19 greeting at an information session.Mother of 2, Jeana Vincent (17) with her Concern emergency supplies box.
Esime Jenaia with her children at their home in Mangochi district, Malawi.A woman farmer in Malawi with her maize crop.
Children from Chigumukire PrimaryMother and daughter at home in Malawi.

Our Work in Malawi

We've been in Malawi for nearly two decades, and it played an important part in the development of Community Management of Acute Malnutrition (CMAM). Today, our focuses include a Graduation program that increases economic stability and agricultural harvests, projects at the intersection of education and gender equality, and ongoing emergency response following the devastation of 2019's Cyclone Idai.

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