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USA | Friday, 11 May 2012 | Views [500] | Comments [3]

khubha Nursery- where I spend my days

khubha Nursery- where I spend my days

On Monday we walked to one of our volunteer locations. First stop was a government run school that had a special needs program, nursery and primary schools. The special needs children were so precious and not unlike our own special needs kids in the US. The difficult part is that there were only two teachers and many children. Those kids really need individual attention, so it was a good opportunity to volunteer some time there. But I wanted to see all of my options and checked out the nursery school. Beautiful babes sat on our laps as the teacher explained the need for individual attention as well as supplies and this drink they call porridge that gives them a little sustenance during the day. It's basically flour and sugar cane. A few of the volunteers stayed there and the others went back to help with the special needs kids. My gut told me to check out our third option and I'm so glad I did.

Teacher Neema was so happy to have us there (two of us) and kept saying "thank you, I'm so happy". Neema is the only teacher there and she has 53 children on the roster. She said many of them were sick and I think there were about 36 that day that were there. She had the children greet us with a song welcoming me as Teacha Christina. So adorable. So each day I go there at 8am. She teaches us some Swahili and then I teach the alphabet and numbers in both swahili and english. yep- i can count to 50 in Swahili now. :)

Her need here is great as it's a private school so she doesn't get any government support and many of the children's parents can't pay or they don't have parents. There are 20 children that don't have sponsorship, meaning they can't pay for the school year. When Neema told me how much it cost for a child to go to school there, I just couldn't believe it. I had that much in my backpack and could easily spend it on a night out. 75,000 Tanzania shillings per year, which is about $46 per child per year. $46. With the money my amazing donors helped raise, I could pay for all 20 plus buy supplies and games. But there are other volunteers here that would also like to sponsor, so I can't be greedy :) I purchased  50 math books for them so far and they are loving the stickers and beach balls. I want to assess where the greatest need is before I donate the money. Neema needs help there but can't pay a teacher's salary. I will find out how much a month's salary is and look to do continuous fundraising to support her. In the bigger picture she would like to build a school of her own. Right now she is using space on Muslim land and they often come in and disrupt the class to have their own class or for whatever reason. And she says they are very strict. It would probably cost about $25,000 for land and to construct a building so I'm keeping that in the back of my mind.

These children are so well behaved and polite, and from what the other volunteers say about the kids at the public school, it's night and day. Her little daughter, Glory Goodluck, is 3 years old and knows the answer to most of the questions she asks. They love her and respect her as a teacher. She is an amazing woman and I'm proud to be able to give her some support. She calls me her sister and I think we will be lifelong friends.

Comments

1

So proud of you Sis! Thanks for keeping us updated and so glad you are touching the hearts of those children.

  Michelle May 12, 2012 11:27 AM

2

your soul must be so filled doing this. what a joy. this one got me misty eyed! I am proud of you and so glad that i was able to be a small part of all the gifts you are able to offer. What an amazing time!

  Sperry May 17, 2012 4:26 AM

3

Can't wait to hear all about your experience! I'm sure you'll have that same feeling whenever I get back from Africa and people ask, "So how was it?" All I can do is just look at them dumbfounded because there's no way to put it into words and you feel their question is so small compared to what you experienced. It's a life-changer! Yay!!!!!!!!

  Lexie May 18, 2012 3:00 AM

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