Arise School: Making a Real Difference in the Local Community!

What a difference a week makes! Just over a week ago, we received an email from someone enquiring about sponsoring a child. In particular, he was interested in sponsoring a little boy. What has happened since has already changed the lives of one small boy and his family.

We asked the school to identify a suitable child who, without sponsorship, would not have the opportunity of an education. We quickly received information about a three year old boy and his family who were living in conditions that, even in a community where so many are so very poor, the school found shocking. 

The little boy is just three years old, the second youngest of four siblings, aged from eight months to six years. He has two older sisters. The children live with their single parent mother in the most extreme poverty in one small, wooden room.  
They have little by way of possessions – no beds or even mattresses to sleep on. Their house has no water or electricity and there is no toilet. Most of the time, they do not have food to eat nor is there is anyone to provide for them. Neither of the older children attended school nor did it seem there would ever be any likelihood of them doing so. 
Following their initial visit, the school returned with clothing, blankets and food for the family. On learning of their circumstances, the new sponsor agreed immediately to support the little boy. He also made an additional donation for the purchase of mattresses, mosquito nets and other much needed household items.

Coincidentally, and very fortuitously, in the next two days, we received independent offers from two of our existing sponsors. Both wanted to sponsor another little girl. That meant that all three children could start at Arise School!

In a short space of time, a different life has opened up for this family. All three children started school this week. The smiles on their faces say it all! They now have the chance of an education. The family has hope for the future – another amazing example of how our shared aspirations with Arise School to make a real difference for the poorest children in their community are being realised. A huge “Thank You” to our three sponsors for making this possible. What a difference a week makes!
If you would like to make this sort of difference in the life of a child and give his or her family hope for the future, please email us at for information about our ACE Sponsorship Scheme.

Elineema’s Blog

Elineema, now aged 10 years, was one of the first children to start at Arise School. He is a bright boy who is doing well in his studies. Like many of the local children, he was very much in need of care and attention when we first heard about him. 

Elineema’s father died when he was quite young and his mother suffers from mental illness. As a young child, he was taken under the wing of an older woman, who has become his guardian despite the challenges they face. Elineema now regards her as his grandmother. They live in a mud house with no water or electricity and nothing much inside – just two beds at different ends of the room and a cow in the next, separated by a door. The cow and goats are the only source of income they can depend on.  

Like most of the Arise pupils, Elineema assists with the chores both before and after school, collecting water in a bucket, helping with the cow and goats. He will then complete his homework assignments by solar lamp before the light fails. Elineema loves going to school and enjoys the 30 minute walk. This is how Elineema describes his situation: 

“Hello! My name is Elineema, I am happy to tell you that I am in class four. It is a very good class and pupils give me challenge in my studies that helps me to be active because everyone wants to be number one.

I always wake up early in the morning, I check wether our cattle have enough food for the day and if they are all okay then I take a shower at 6:00 am. I brush my teeth, once I finish I put on my school uniform, I also check to see if my guardian is awake. My guardian makes tea for me most of the times but sometimes I wake up early and make tea for both of us before hoping down to school. 

I have many friends on my way to school; I usually wake them to go to school, they are my good neighbors. I usually do domestic work during the weekends. I cut grass for the cattle, we have one cow at home, her name is Faraja and also five goats: their names are Cheupe (white), Chekundu (red), Nyota (star), Maua (flower) and Mariki (I have no idea what this means) the one I like the most.

My favourite food is ugali and vegetable, kale (sukuma wiki) it is a very good kind of vegetable. I also like playing football. When I grow up I would like to be a Doctor. I perform well in science and I hope that I will be top on the rank.”

Elineema’s grandmother is so happy that her boy is getting such a quality education which would otherwise be totally unaffordable. He has only been able to have this opportunity of an education as a result of the ongoing support of the couple who sponsor him. Please help us to give more children in the community the chance of an education and hope for the future.

Ensuring Equal Access for Girls at Arise

Arise Community School welcomes all children in the local community irrespective of race, religion, tribe or ethnicity. It is open to any child whatever their circumstances and, since it started, we have been concerned to ensure that girls have equal access to boys.
In many developing countries, like Tanzania, where money for education is in short supply, it is boys who will be afforded priority over girls. In some tribes, like the Maasai, there are also cultural barriers to girls being educated. This means that, particularly in poor, rural areas, girls are either still not educated or may fall out of school if there is too little money.

Girls also often lose schooling because of caring responsibilities or they may become pregnant at an early age. They are unlikely to return to their studies or to have the means to support themselves or their child. In Tanzania, there are strict laws relating to underage sex where this results in pregnancy. The fathers frequently “disappear”. They know that, if caught and convicted, the penalty can be up to 30 years’ imprisonment.
Arise is located in an area where too many young girls still do not have the chance of an education. The ACE Sponsorship Scheme is able to give some of them a one off opportunity to receive a primary education. Their “stories” clearly evidence their plight.  

One such little girl is Angel (not her real name), aged just three years old. She lives with her grandmother in extreme poverty. Their home is a small mud house very much in need of repair and they have very few possessions. Her mother became pregnant at a very young age. As she is so young, an order of nuns are sponsoring her to undertake a course in tailoring. She no longer lives at home and has left her daughter in her grandmother’s care.  

Angel’s grandmother used to try and provide for her family by selling vegetables. She is no longer able to do this. There is no way that she is able to afford to send Angel to school. With the support of a sponsor, Angel has now completed her first two weeks in school. Her grandmother is delighted. The ACE Sponsorship Scheme, has given Angel the opportunity of an education and the family has hope for the future.

If you would like to give a child like Angel the opportunity of an education at Arise School and hope for the future, we would be delighted to hear from you. Please email us at:

Tying the Knot at Arise!

Since its very early days, part of the philosophy of Arise School has been that the school facilities and grounds should be available as a community resource when not in use as a school. On Saturday, 24th June, the school witnessed two people tie the knot. The most amazing thing was that both were well known to the staff and students. In fact, not only did they meet at Arise, they also chose to have their wedding celebration there!

Martha has been a teacher at the school for about two years. Emmanuel has been one of the builders working at Arise since the foundations of the first classroom were laid back in 2012. Love blossomed and they recently surprised everyone by announcing their forthcoming marriage. They are now officially Mr. and Mrs. Magambo.
It was a fabulous occasion filled with a whirlwind of pictures, flowers, dresses, emotions and, most importantly, joy. The other members of staff showed their support from the beginning to the end of of the day. They were just so delighted to be part of their journey and also wanted to be part of their celebration of such a personal milestone.

The couple’s choice of the school for their wedding is an excellent example of the use of the school as a community resource. It is also very real evidence that Arise School is not just a place of learning but one filled with love, friendship and compassion. Everyone is part of the extended Arise family.

Heartfelt congratulations to the new couple from us all!

Arise Community School: Reg. KL. 07/07/004!

Arise Community School first opened in January 2013. Whilst we have visited on many occasions since, our visit to the school this month was unique. It was the first time that we have visited it as an official school. Only very recently we heard the excellent news that the school’s application for registration with the Tanzanian Ministry of Education had been successful.  

Registration was started almost as soon as the school opened. However, the process has been lengthy and drawn out with many requirements to be satisfied. Quite some time ago, all the requirements had been completed, the forms and other necessary documents submitted and we were hopeful that registration would be granted. Then the Tanzanian Government changed the rules. There were new requirements. At the end of last year, the whole application had to be resubmitted on new forms!  

It was successful! Arise Community School: Reg. KL. 07/07/004 is now officially recognised as a school. Although it is a private and not a Government school, non registered schools can be closed down at any point by Education Department inspectors.  

Registration permits the school to publicise itself as such by erecting a school sign by the roadside. The new sign outside Arise did not, however, seem to attract much notice from the passing cows and goats! There are also various requirements that the school must adhere to, including flying the Tanzanian flag and displaying the official photo of the Tanzanian President in the office.

Arise School will be able to register as an exam centre in its own right for the students to be able to sit their national exams there. The teachers will be able to access training and seminars offered by the Government. Registration lasts for four years after which time reassessment takes place. We hope by then that the students’ exam results will be evidencing Arise as a centre of excellence.

Achieving the school’s registration has taken a huge amount of time and effort over the years. At a press conference held on 14th June, Robath Assey, Quality Assurance Officer for the Ministry of Education, Siha District, announced:  

“This year after satisfying all required credentials by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, we were able to register Arise Community School which is an English medium school based in Siha District. The registration of the school is an open door of opportunity for both parents and students to take courage in studying hard”.

Many congratulations to Frank, Salome, the staff and everyone at Arise who has worked so hard locally to make this possible. A big “Thank You”, too, to all of our ACE supporters who have donated or contributed to making this possible. It is a landmark of which we should all be very proud.

Back at Arise!

We flew out from the UK earlier this week for another return trip to Arise School. As always, there was that moment of great relief when we got through immigration at Kilimanjaro Airport without being asked to open our suitcases! Invariably, our cases are overflowing with items for the school. On this occasion, they included books, stickers, sports equipment, two laptops and knitted hats! Yes, the school is at an altitude of over 4,000 feet and it can be quite chilly here at this time of the year, as we are finding out.

We were back at Arise the following morning. It was good to be greeted by many of the staff we already know and new staff who have joined since we were previously there. The children were enjoying their morning break in the play area and ran to give us such a warm welcome. It is always so great to see their smiley faces. They had only returned at the beginning of this week from their month long school holiday and were clearly pleased to be back in the company of their friends after the break.  

Once the children were back in class, we were able to do a tour of the grounds and buildings. It is the end of the rainy season and everywhere is looking so green. The plants and shrubs that were planted at the end of last year are already so well established. The birds of paradise and other tropical flowers are beautiful. There are bananas, avocados and papaya on the trees ready for ripening as the temperature rises over the next few months.

All three classrooms that were built last year are now in use and we were delighted to see that the base for the final three classrooms has already been completed. The oldest children are preparing to sit the first part of their national exams in November. When the morning break finished, they returned to their desks – arranged outside under the trees to ensure no copying! – to sit another test paper. 
As we walked back to the office to start our discussions with Frank and Salome, there was a quiet buzz of activity coming from the classrooms. It is hard to believe that only five years ago, in a field in this remote corner of Tanzania, the footings for the first classroom were just being dug!