Melania Trump, the U.S first lady visited Ghana as her Africa solo tour. She was in Malawi on Thursday, touting the work of the U.S. Agency for International Development.
Mrs. Trump is on her first extended solo global trip as first lady.
It didn't take long for the typically reserved USA first lady to dive fully into the moment. She is focusing the trip on her interest in child welfare.
She also travels to Kenya and Egypt before returning to Washington, where the president has been consumed by a political storm over his Supreme Court nominee, among other domestic challenges.
A batch of 1.4 million books donated Thursday brought to almost 10 million the total Malawi has received in recent years under USAID's national reading program, officials said. The special is called "Being Melania - The First Lady".
Following the school visit, Mrs. Trump met with Ambassador Virginia Palmer and the Embassy staff, thanking them for their service on behalf of the United States and their continued efforts in Malawi.
The first lady's trip is "fantastic and really encouraging", said Tom Hart, executive director for North America at the ONE Campaign, an advocacy group dedicated to combating global poverty and disease in Africa and elsewhere. Mrs. Trump was greeted at the airport by the First Lady of Malawi, Gertrude Mutharika, and her granddaughter, who handed Mrs. Trump flowers. The trip is part of her "Be Best" initiative, which focuses on improving the lives of children. On her visit, she came to see babies being weighed and given blankets and teddy bears donated by the White House at the Greater Accra Regional Hospital.
US First Lady Melania Trump receives flowers from children as she visits the Nest childrens home orphanage, which primarily cares for children who's parents have been incarcerated, in Nairobi, on October 5, 2018.
Others are not convinced the White House sees Africa as "extremely important", the first lady's trip notwithstanding.
US First Lady Melania Trump arrived in Kenya on Thursday night, to a busy schedule of the East African nation, before heading to Egypt.
"I don't think it squares at all", said Reuben E. Brigety, a former US ambassador to the African Union and now dean of George Washington University's school of global affairs.
"I was heartened to spend time with the students and was honored to donate school supplies and soccer balls", she said.
The Trump administration recently chose to again allow Americans to import the body parts of African elephants shot for sport.
"I wish someone would take her to the fashion shop", Ghanaian Elizabeth Ohene told BBC World News this week.