A Village of Hope

In the African nation of Malawi, families toil in fields as malaria, tuberculosis and other diseases go untreated. But hope is within reach: The Millennium Promise, a philanthropy run by Dr. Jeffrey Sachs and supported by Angelina Jolie, is working with 60 villages (so far) to make them healthily self-sufficient through such simple tools as schools, seeds and clean drinking water. Here is what PEOPLE reporter Mary Green saw in the village of Mwandana.

'TURNING POINT'

By providing fertilizer and seeds as promised, Sachs's team has brought hope to villagers in Mwandana. "Things have been promised before and not been implemented," says Cecilia. "But when I saw fertilizer coming, I said, 'This is it now. They were really telling us the truth.' I am thinking it will be the turning point in the village, especially for me."

(For more on this story, pick up the March 13, 2006, issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands now.)