Ciyawo.org / Chiyao.org exists to allow for the easy sharing of information relating to the language and culture of the Yawo (Yao, Ajawa, etc.) peoples of Malawi, Mozambique and Tanzania. If you are a speaker of Ciyawo and would like to contribute to this site, please contact us for further details. This site, though containing information relating to religious materials, is strictly non-religious and intended as an academic and cultural exercise.

In November of 2013, this site began to undergo changes to the look and structure to create a more visual experience. After noticing the mobile revolution in which Africans were entering the information superhighway via handheld devices, another redesign changed the look of the site in May of 2015 to allow the Yawo themselves more access to the site and its new features.

The vision of the site’s founder is to include a vast variety of images, videos and information relating to Yawo life, culture and language. Be a part by contacting us with your own submissions of short stories, poetry, proverbs & yitagu, photos and more.


“The I Am Yawo Project”, located at www.ciyawo.org, exists to pull together all that can be found about the Yawo people and culture (a manageable task due to the roughly 3 million Ciyawo speakers mainly in Malawi, Mozambique and Tanzania). Rather than act solely as a conduit of information, “The I Am Yawo Project” adds to its uniqueness through the wealth of photography, audio and video found on the site.

Most of the media content comes from the site’s creator, Tim Cowley of Ajambule Media and ExpatMediaPro.com. His original goal was to create an online resource that would list all that could be found in the Ciyawo language (books, videos, audio materials, etc.). But it has since grown into a media-rich, visually engaging experience that attracts researchers and the Yawo alike, especially those who live abroad and wish to reconnect with their Yawo heritage. The current localized curator is Tobias Houston, an Australian based out of Lichinga, Mozambique.

The site covers topics including the history of the Yawo people, language and culture; published academic works and books; a regularly-updated Facebook page that mentions new resources that have been discovered; audio materials (proverbs, music and religious material); an online marketplace; photo galleries of Yawo food, landscapes, religious life, wildlife endemic to Yawo areas, pastimes and work; documentaries, film clips and music videos. The site welcomes input and seeks to add a mix of contributors, both Yawo and foreigners, interested in building a richer online experience.