Madonna has won herself some African fans over Thanksgiving, and also landed herself in a bit of trouble.
The popstar travelled to poverty-stricken Malawi, Africa, where she has funded schools, orphanages and medical centres, spending a week visiting the orphanages that she adopted two of her children from.
Her charity, Raising Malawi, was funded in 2006, and has had her frequenting the country since. Last week, Madonna took her 14-year-old son Rocco Ritchie, as well as her two adopted children David Banda, 9 and Mercy James, 8, on the week-long visit, documenting her trip on Instagram.
Madonna visiting a school in Chabuula, Malawi
Madonna cuddled up to children in local schools and met with President Peter Mutharika, who appointed her as Malawi’s Goodwill Ambassador for Child Welfare. She even spent time with the father of her adopted son David Banda.
But not everyone was happy for Madonna’s visit.
The family of her adopted daugher Mercy James have accused Madonna of ‘betraying’ the family, and taking their granddaughter away from her African roots. Madonna adopted Mercy in 2009 from an orphanage in Malawi. Mercy’s teenage mother had died days after child birth, but her biological grandparents had hopes of bringing their granddaughter home when they had enough money to support her.
However, they were told by the government that a ‘rich lady’ wanted to adopt her, and were advised to sign adoption papers. They say that thought Mercy would get a good education and then use her privilege to help the family. Saxon Maude, Mercy’s grandfather, spoke exclusively to the Daily Mail.
“I worked for a household years ago where a foreign lady took one of the children to be educated and brought up abroad, and that child came back as a doctor and improved the lives of every member of the family. That is what persuaded me to let Mercy go.”