Like every young person, Maxson Matiyasi from Nsana Village T/A Tsabango had dreams of becoming a visual artist. He wanted to be able to create life through his artistic work and to make visual arts as his full time job to sustain himself and his family. Nevertheless, losing his parents at tender age shuttered all his dreams. He had no one to support him achieve his long time dream.
The story of Maxson Matiyasi changed when his grandmother was enrolled in the Family Strengthening Programme. Being a caregiver to Maxson and four of his siblings and without any regular income to support the children, his grandmother was deemed fit to be a beneficiary for the SOS Children’s Villages Malawi Family Strengthening Programme by the Tsabango Community Task Force (CTF).
Through the Family strengthening Programme, Maxson got all the educational support regarding his secondary education. After finishing his secondary education, he passed, but his grades were not good enough for university education.
This did not deter his longtime dream of studying visual arts. After discussions with
the SOS Children Villages Field Officers, they assured him that there were other options even after failing to study in the university. He opted for job shadowing through attaching him with an arts studio so that he can get trained from there. True to the plan, he was attached at the Malabvi Arts Studio in Lilongwe in February, 2017.
Two years into his training, he has become an ardent master of his trade, his paintings are fondly loved by local and international clients who visit the arts studio. The studio manager loves his dedication and hardworking this, he has been offered a part time job at the gallery.
“I am thankful for the support SOS Children Villages Malawi has given me because without them I could not have achieved my dreams of being a visual artist”, said Maxson.
Zachariah Phiri is the teacher and owner of Malabvi Arts studio who said that Maxson is one of the students who has demonstrated great potential in visual arts. His portraits are quite outstanding. “When I am not in the Studio I make sure that he is in charge of the studio because he is the most trust worthy and humble students here”, he said.
Since he started, training at Malabvi Arts Studio Maxson Matiyasi has attended more than two painting galleries and has managed to sell four of his paintings at a higher price of 70,000 ($93). He uses his money to support his siblings and grandmother. He is mostly referred to as a role model when orienting new students that are studying at the studio.