Art, food and fashion at Tumaini Festival

The 2019 edition of the Tumaini Festival took place a couple of weeks ago. A platform by refugees for refugee, Malawian and international artists to collaborate, exchange and create together using the message of love and peace, continues to grow year on year.

Performance by children at the festival

More than just music

Tumaini is primarily a music festival. But on the peripherals, a whole lot is going on. Fashion, art, food, and drink among others.


Food and drink

local chicken braai

There was plenty of delicious food on sale prepared in a uniquely East African way. Mthumbwana (goat stomach wrapped in intestines) and local chicken. Plain chapati and egg-chapati wraps.

Beware the oil fire

While waiting for our food, some pot used for frying chips caught fire. You can see the look of concern on the guy preparing his chapatis at the next food stall.

Fruit juice of soft drinks? Your choice!

Fresh mango and mint juice.

A row of watering holes and food stalls at Tumaini

Plenty of watering holes selling all manner of beverages.

Load Side Bar at Tumaini Festival

Load Side Bar – it has a nice ring to it, no? 🙂

Art and fashion

Handicrafts on sale

The local refugee community with their handicrafts – necklaces, key-rings, shirts, bags, etc.

Handicrafts on sale at Tumaini Festival

The Dzaleka refugee community

Dzaleka Refugee Camp, where Tumaini Festival is held, sometimes feels like a different country. As soon as you step out of your car you are met by lots of excited children shouting at each other as they run around in the language of their homeland. The earth is parched and dusty, the air dry and hot.

An artist mingling with the crowd at the festival

The odd artist mingling with the audience.

The Tumaini Festival is held every year at the end of October or right at the start of November.  It is a two-day festival, free to enter and organised from donations via initiatives like Kickstarter. Definitely, an event to add to your calendar.


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