Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Update September 2016

Our visit in June was most productive and more was achieved than expected.  After a number of meetings with the representatives of various committees from Chitemo and Nyhinila villages it was agreed that the piglet breeding project would provide the best means for the villages to maintain their schools and pay the teachers.  Now that 5 village members had been trained in animal husbandry specifically for the breeding of pigs the next stage would be to build the appropriate pigsties.  A budget for the cost of the pigsties had been produced for SEEDS and funding would be transferred in stages as the building progressed.

The schools were running smoothly with 114 children in Chitemo and 55 in Nyhinila.  These numbers fluctuate on a weekly basis going up rather than down!  The outdoor equipment has proved very popular with the children and grown ups alike!  We had the opportunity of supply both schools with a substantial amount of teaching materials and also metal trunks to use for storage.  Meetings were held with the two teachers and the 5 who are in training at present. I was informed that a new curriculum for pre-schools would be available by September and these would be purchased for both schools during our September visit.  Regular inspections by representatives of the education authorities would be made of the schools to ensure that all is in order. Each school was also to have added a small classroom for the teaching of the youngest children. Benches and chalk boards were to be supplied.

A visit was made to the Tanzanian Livestock Research Institute to discuss the supplying of an appropriate breed of pig for the villages and it was suggested that the Large White was the best breed and would give the most yield of piglets.  These would be purchased during our September visit. The Institute would also pay visits to the villages to ensure that all was going according to plan. The project will take time but in due course funds will build up to maintain the schools and pay the teachers thereby enabling the villages to become independent and self supporting.

As always it was good to have time with the children engaging in various activities including lots of singing.

The return trip in September is to ensure that all is going well with the schools, the bore-hole and most importantly the piglet project.

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

4 June off to Tanzania

Another trip is on the horizon.  Four of us will travel the many miles to the district of Mpwapwa.  This trip is specifically to kick start the next SEEDS project.  We now have two pre-schools up and running with a trained teacher in each.  Three more teachers are being trained and will graduate at the end of this year.  Teachers need to be paid and schools maintained. At present SEEDS is supporting the teachers.   We have therefore trained 5 men from the villages in animal husbandry to breed pigs.  They in turn will train other villagers.  Once piglets are produced in time they will be sold at market and the funds will go into the school bank account to pay the teachers salaries and maintain the schools.  Pork is a favourite meat in Tanzania. Of course this will all take time but the aim is to enable the two villages Chitemo and Nyhinila to become self-supporting and independent of our aid.

A number of supporters have sponsored and named a piglet.  If you would like to do so the purchase of a pig is £15.

The story of the 'piglets' will be updated on my return after 20 June. 

Help for orphan children in Kiteto area

Rev Barka Mollel whom I have known for the past 8 years who is a Masai Anglican priest who  ministers to the Masai people in a very poor area of Tanzania.  There are many orphan children who are suffering from poverty.  Little food, clean water, clothes, education.  It was decided to help some of these children and funds were sent to buy the basic necessities and send them to school. Below are a few photographs of some of the children. 

We in the west are so privilege. Despite these years of 'austerity' many of us continue to lead very comfortable lives, buying the latest IT, holidaying around the world, clothes, houses, cars, paying school fees and yet in 2016 there are still so many children around the world who have so very little and barely survive. There is something very wrong in the distribution of resources in our world.
Children receive grain and oil and books for school

Beans, maize, oil

More grain and oil

Grain, oil,school uniform and school book

It takes very little funding to make a big difference in the lives of these children.

Saturday, 23 April 2016

Food distribution update

2015 was a very hard year for many people in Tanzania due to the lack of rain 2014/1015.  No rain meant no crops, no crops meant no food.  They were on starvation diets.  We were able to send out funds raised by the Scouts after they  visited our villages in 2014.  I have recently received photograph showing the grain being distributed.   Thankfully the rains came  in  November 2015 to April 2016 which has enabled the people to grow their crops and these will  supply them with food until November 2016 when hopefully the rains will come again.

A big thank you to the Scouts  who through their efforts have helped the people of Chitemo and Nyhinila when they were seriously in need of food.

April 23 2016 - Update - Great News!

In my February update I mentioned that we were supplying outdoor play equipment for our schools in Chitemo and Nyhinila villages.  Swings, slides, seesaws and roundabouts.   These were ordered in October 2015 and our iron worker Joshua has worked so hard to produce the same items for each school.  Working in rural Tanzania, East Africa, is very different from what we might know.  Joshua's work shop is a wooden shack that does not have the up-to-date equipment we might find in an iron works in Europe.  It has meant sheer hard physical work to produce this equipment.  There is also the fact that during the rainy season November to April the people have to work on the land to produce the food that will sustain them through the year and Joshua also has to do this so this brought a halt to the project. The equipment was completed some time ago but he had to wait until the rains had finished and the roads were passable and bridges repaired to be able to transport everything in a very old lorry the 93 kilometres to Chitemo and then another 7 to Nyhinila.  Well a couple of weeks ago the equipment was installed and I have just had a photograph  that gives an idea of what has been done.  I shall be able to take more comprehensive photographs when I return in June.

Also the school toilets are almost completed.  The walls still need to be rendered and doors installed. We are getting there!!!
Our final project - the breeding of piglets - is starting to get off the ground. I have had the budget through to train five villagers in animal husbandry at the Animal Research Centre.  These men  will initially start off the pig breeding and also  train other villagers.  We are now in the process of organising when they will undertake the course.  Once they have completed the course and built the appropriate pig sties we shall start supplying the pigs and feed. Sows are very productive producing twice a year up to 10 piglets per litter. The funds raised from the sale of piglets will be banked and then used to pay the teachers,  maintain the schools and the pigs.  The projects aim is to enable the villages to become independent of needing our support in the future. 
I am thrilled that already a number of supporters have donated  funds to buy piglets. It cost the equivalent of £15 for a sow or bore.  The supporters have chosen names for their piglets and they are:
Percy, Brian, Dorothy, Dot, Jenny, Tom, Lizzie, Charlie, Rosie, Daisy, Paddy, Bertie, Del, & Rodney (someone has a sense of humour!)
The pigs will be supplied by the Animal Research Centre to ensure we have good quality animals.
If you would like to sponsor a piglet please visit our donation page. 

Monday, 22 February 2016

February 2016 update

We are moving forward slowly but surely.  During our visit in October 2015 after discussions with Archbishop Jacob Chimeledya we acquired a new coordinator  Stephen Ngailo.    Stephen is also Project Director for Compassion International, based in Mpwapwa.  He has been a good friend and supporter of SEEDS for many years and his role is fundamental to the success of our project. He is our main communication channel with the villages and senior members of the Diocesan team in Mpwapwa. He acts as our interpreter and oversees the developments in between our visits.
He is married to Ansila and is the very proud father of his son Aristotle.

Stephen helping to blow up balloons for the children.

We are also delighted that we have been able to fund the training of two young village women and one young man as pre-school teachers.  Their course started at the beginning of February and they will graduate at the end of this year.  Both schools are coping with large numbers of children and the addition of more trained teachers will be a relief for the two existing teachers and their volunteers.

Many areas in Tanzania have suffered with lack of food during 2015 due to the poor rain fall in 2014/2015.  The majority of the people in rural areas exist from what they are able to grow.  No rain mean no crops, no crops means no food.  In 2014 30 scouts visited our villages and have continued to support them by raising funds for various projects.  Their latest contribution has  enabled us to send £500 in February to buy food for the villagers of Chitemo and Nyhinila. The rainy season 2015/16 has been good and it is hoped  the recently sown seeds will bring a  harvest of crops that  will see the people through until the end of the year with some in reserve.