Macheso’s love warms up homes, schools

16 Jun, 2024 - 00:06 0 Views
Macheso’s love warms up homes, schools Alick Macheso

The Sunday Mail

Prince Mushawevato

FOR sungura maestro Alick Macheso, turning 56 on June 10 was not just about cake and congratulations.

It was a day of introspection, a swirling mix of emotions like happiness, gratitude and a touch of unease.

Macheso, a man whose music has captivated audiences for decades, acknowledges a higher power at play.

“Musiki ari kuchengeta; inyasha kuve pano nhasi (God is taking care of me; it is all through grace to be alive),” he declared with humility on the eve of his birthday at a family show held in Harare.

This unwavering faith, coupled with his immense success, has ignited a powerful sense of purpose in the singer. He feels a growing responsibility that extends beyond electrifying crowds with his music.

Over the years, glimpses of Macheso’s philanthropic side have emerged. He has quietly supported various causes, but a recent interview reveals a burning desire to do more.

“It is not because I am particularly clever that I am here today,” he reflected, with a hint of introspection in his voice.

“Because of God’s care, I feel a calling to do more to uplift others.”

Giving back

For the sungura maestro, his success has become a bridge to give back to his community. Turning a year older was not just a birthday; it was a moment to reflect on his growing philanthropic mission.

Macheso, fondly known as Baba Sharo, is not one for fanfare. Quietly, he has been supporting at least 30 primary and secondary schoolchildren across the country. The singer meets their educational needs in the form of school fees, uniforms and other essentials.

His recent donation of groceries and a water tank to Kutenda Children’s Home in Masembura, Bindura, illustrates his commitment to improving lives. But his generosity goes beyond immediate needs.

Recently, Macheso revisited his roots, literally. He funded the construction of new classroom blocks at his former school, Enterprise Primary, in Shamva. Seeing smiles on the faces of the learners, many from underprivileged backgrounds, solidified his desire to do more.

“I have done the little I can,” Macheso humbly admitted.

His dream is to use his platform to empower others nationwide. One current project involves securing solar panels and geysers for Kutenda Children’s Home, ensuring a constant supply of warm water during the harsh winter season. Baba Sharo’s philosophy is simple: Giving back is everyone’s responsibility. He considers his philanthropy as a way of thanking fans for their unwavering support.

“I cannot thank them all personally; but by helping hospitals, schools and orphanages, I show my appreciation.”

The singer’s vision extends beyond his home province, Mashonaland Central. He has an ultimate goal of replicating his efforts in every corner of Zimbabwe.

Love/guidance

But Macheso’s impact goes beyond material needs. He recognises the importance of parental love and guidance in combating social issues like drug abuse. Born in 1968 in Shamva, Mashonaland Central province, Macheso was raised by a single mother after his father Hudson Chisale abandoned the family when he was still young.

“Rudo rwevabereki rwakakosha (parental love is important) and is one of the secret weapons against this drug and substance abuse scourge,” reckons the “Chengetai” singer. These children are the future. We have a lot of hope in them to take care of the country after our time. However, that will only be possible if we successfully keep them on the right path. Growing up, life was tough for me to the extent that I never believed I would achieve anything. I grew up in a farming community and we were looked down upon by many people.

“However, I never gave up on my dream of becoming a musician. Similarly, I have made it my mission to assist fellow musicians whenever I can,” he said.

He recognises the transformative power of music, particularly for Zimbabwe’s youth. This passion is evident in his close work with both established and aspiring musicians.

Dendera crooner Suluman “Sulu” Chimbetu, a beneficiary of Macheso’s mentorship, expressed his gratitude in a heartfelt birthday message.

“Alick Macheso is an incredible man. I remember when I first entered the music industry; he gave me a platform to showcase my talent. It was tough trying to fill the void left by my late father (Simon Chimbetu), who was a star musician. But thanks to mdhara Macheso, I found it easier. He gave me the chance to perform before a huge crowd. Not only is he humble, but his humility also stands out among many of his other admirable attributes,” Sulu wrote.

Drug menace

Macheso envisions dedicated space for artistic development. He is actively seeking land in Bindura to construct an arts centre. He plans to provide a haven for creative expression, keeping young minds engaged and fostering positive alternatives to drugs and other social ills. He believes the arts centre can provide a much-needed outlet, potentially steering young people away from destructive paths.

“It is quite unfortunate that girls have also joined this drug and substance abuse web. In fact, they are slowly getting worse than boys. I wish the responsible authorities could come up with a lasting solution to this drug and substance abuse menace.

“Vanotengesa madrugs ngavasungwe, vopihwa murango chaiwo (drug peddlers should be arrested and handed stiffer penalties). The issue is getting out of hand. Imagine it is us, the parents, who are now burying the young ones, instead of it being the other way round.”

Macheso, the music legend, is transforming into a beacon of hope, using his compositions and success to uplift communities and inspire a brighter future for Zimbabwe.

The musician shared the stage with Peter “Dhewa” Moyo during his birthday celebration gig held in Harare, while fellow musicians Progress Chipfumo, Carlos Green and Senator Tichareva graced the event.

“It is a blessing and God’s favour when people celebrate birthdays in good health and mind. I feel loved by fans from all walks of life, who have been showering me with lovely birthday messages. I wish I could live longer to share some of my experiences with future generations,” he said in parting.

Meanwhile, the singer is expected to drop his 12th studio album on August 2 in Harare.

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