The kindergarten at Sambasha

In May, Dr. Moshi sent me an email from Tanzania.  The UGA Service Learning class had visited a Maasai school in Sambasha (near Arusha).  It was an open wooden structure with a roof and a concrete floor.  That’s it.  The kids were sitting on the floor trying to write and learn.   Their situation moved Dr. Moshi and she decided to make it one of her many projects.

We collected money from our friends at Just Faith at the UGA Catholic Center, and the teachers in our GPA program  donated their own money with money they collected from friends.  Dr. Moshi inquired from local carpenters about the price, so she could announce in front of the local officials, teachers, students, and community members the number of desks we could expect to see next year (15-20 desks, transparency at all levels).

Me presenting the gift from Just Faith to Mama Hindu

I was watching one woman in particular while Dr. Moshi announced in Kiswahili the goals of Just Faith and GPA and the gift we were giving them.  Her face lit up and she clapped her hands in joy.  Her gratitude brought me to tears.  As President Nyerere said, development should be of people, not things, and education is key to the development of people.  People cannot make choices about their lives unless they know what their choices are.  Education is social justice.

Ululations from the local Maasai women

And I’m glad the donation was given publicly, so everybody knows what should be coming, and this mama who was so happy to receive our gift (and any mama, teacher and child) can get on the local officials’ cases if they drag their feet in getting the desks or don’t get their money’s worth.

Me with some of the students of Sambasha Kindergarten