On 4th July, two volunteers, Ellie and Emma, landed at Kilimanjaro International Airport to start a six week period volunteering at Arise School. Both are studying Geography at Newcastle University and have just completed the second year of their degree. Like our three volunteers last year, Emma and Ellie will also be undertaking their fieldwork research whilst they are there. Now in their second week, they sent us their first impressions of their stay in Tanzania.
“Jambo! 40 hours after leaving Manchester we finally made it safely to Sanya Juu! We were warmly welcomed at Kilimanjaro airport by Frank, Prosper, (one of the older young people supported through ACE to continue his education at secondary level) and Holly (Frank’s older daughter).
After our first night staying with Frank and his lovely family, we did our first big shop at the local store in Sanya Juu! One of the first things we noticed was the climate. We were anticipating scorching days, but, surprisingly, it is not too dissimilar from our familiar grey UK mornings!! At about 2pm though, the clouds burn off and the sun comes out again!
Anna, the deputy headteacher, who we are staying with has been fantastic! She is so funny and a marvellous cook!! Emma and I go to the market on Saturday mornings where we buy all the ingredients for the meals which Anna helps us prepare. We have been sampling many local delicacies such as ‘Ugali’ (maize flour and water with a mashed potato consistency) and ‘Choroko’ (similar to green lentils). We were surprised (and thrilled!!) to see samosas on the table too!
Arise Community School has been a breath of fresh air for us. It is so humbling to see such positive, enthusiastic children who have so little but are truly making the most of every day. They are always so smiley and full of beans, which is making our teaching experience at the school very enjoyable! The children are very polite and well mannered. It is quite clear that they all look up to and respect their teachers who are playing such a fundamental role in the early stages of their education. Everyone, both at the school and in the local area, has been so incredibly kind and we are so grateful to have been so warmly welcomed into the Arise family! We can’t wait to see what the next 6 weeks hold for us!”
Ellie and Emma