I have been home for a week from a most amazing trip to Tanzania, Africa and still processing the experience through blog posts. You can read them all:
Today I am celebrating our school visit. The Grand Circle Foundation sponsors a number of schools in Tanzania. The one we visited is Endoro Primary School in Karatu.
The head teacher, “Mother Mary”, took us into her small office to tell us about the school and answer any questions. Most of her students come to school from the Iraqw tribe. They do not know the national language, Kiswahili. All subjects in primary school are taught in the national language, and English is one class. Later, in secondary school, all subjects are taught in English. These students not only have to master many subjects, they must do so in many languages.
They begin school at 7 AM with cleaning and eating a breakfast of porridge. The classrooms were very basic with a chalkboard at one end and 10 desks in 3 rows with 2-3 students at each desk. The desks consisted of a wooden bench and a short wooden table top. Their supplies include pencils, assignment books, and textbooks. There are no computers at this school.
While we were there, the regional director passed by, Sandra. It was amazing to hear her speak of the foundation and their mission to improve education. The Tanzanian government has made all public schools free. But that means there is no longer a $10 tuition fee per year. Costs for supplies, books, uniforms, food, etc. are not covered. Grand Circle Foundation recently built more classrooms and installed toilets at Endoro School.
Sandra assured us 100% of the donations go directly to the schools. She told us the cost of textbooks is about $3-$6 each. What a bargain to us in the US!
I was charmed by the students that I met. One girl told me her name is Martha, my third daughter’s name, so we made an immediate connection. I hope to establish pen pals for my students.
My birthday is August 11th. For my birthday, I am asking my friends to donate to the Grand Circle Foundation specifically for Endoro school. You can donate by emailing me for a donation form, signing on to the Grand Circle Foundation Website, or sending a payment to me through Pay Pal and I will donate. Just think what $10 can do for these kids!
Here is a video of the students singing a welcome song and my small group singing their National Anthem. (Sorry, it’s quite loud, so turn down your volume.)