2009 Report

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT 2009

Care for Africa (CfA) has narrowed its focus within the Tarime district in Tanzania primarily to providing safe clean water to the people living in communities where there is no or limited suitable water; as well as developing an Education Resource Centre.

The container project continues to expand with an enthusiastic response from within our local community, Launceston. We do however; need to be mindful of what goes into our containers due to the unfortunate rising shipping costs we are confronted with.

Olivia Mensah-Kamara, John Swindells and Jane Zeuchner followed a shipping container laden with goods collected by Larmenier School and our local community. They successfully delivered the much needed goods to The Krisna Refugee Camp in Ghana.

Our fundraisers continue to work tirelessly to promote the work and needs of CfA, as well as raise much needed funds.

Fresh clean water is the source of life.

When we visited our 6 communities in Tarime, namely Kiterere, Surubu, Biswari, Bugango, Mtana and Somboysoko, we discovered that the need for clean safe drinking water was overwhelmingly apparent to all of us. Women and children are forced to walk up to 20kms a day, resulting in children being unable to attend school and mothers spending long periods away from their children. Water borne diseases such as diarrhea, intestinal worms and eye and skin diseases are an everyday reality, with diarrhea being the leading cause of childhood death in Tanzania.

The main request from the elders and the local people in the outlying communities we visited was a request for a reliable safe clean water source.

Therefore, our health team has proposed to construct 5 groundwater boreholes with installed hand pumps for domestic use in 5 needy communities

The Surubu community, comprising 3500 people had the greatest need for a water well. The women and girls will walk a 14km round trip to fetch water for their families twice a day. They will carry the water in 20L containers on their head.

Almost one tenth of the global disease burden could be prevented by improving water supply, sanitation, hygiene and management of water resources (Pruss-Ustun et al, WHO).

Dr Lisa Searle prepared an initial report with a proposal for CfA to establish 5 water wells, one in each community. Paul Statham and Kara Bell extended Lisa’s proposal with a report identifying the need and logistics of establishing a water well in the Surubu community. Paul and Kara made contact with Mal Edmonds an Australian Engineer working for Stanley Mining, based in Mwanza, Tanzania to construct the water well. The proposed site is in between the 2 schools in Surubu and close to the health dispensary. Mal is willing to drill and construct the well at a cost of US$10,800 plus A$1,000 for the hand pump.

Stewart Brown, a retired agricultural engineer is keen to oversee the construction of the well in Surubu. Stewart is currently liasing with Mal Edmonds over the logistics of constructing the well. Stewart is willing to work in Tarime for 2 weeks to coordinate the well project this year, pending board approval and availability of funds.

Stewart would also investigate the progress of The Education Resource Centre, Sarafina’s schooling, as well as further research for the water needs of our 6 communities.

Whilst Stewart is in Tanzania, we are proposing for him to visit Barbara Winani at Mto wa Mbu, near Arusha to research the proposed water pipeline Peter Hewitt promised Barbara during his final visit to Tanzania in 2007. The water pipeline has an estimated length of 9.2 kms, and will provide safe clean drinking water to 3 Communities:

  • Ndinika- 1000 people
  • Ranch- 980 people
  • Bomba- 950 people

The suggestion is to provide a 9.2 km pipeline from a mountain stream branching off to the above communities to provide an adequate water supply of clean safe water to these people.

Through the enthusiastic and knowledgeable endeavors of Dr Michelle Woods we have successfully linked in with The Tasmanian University through the school of nursing. Leanne Richter, Jane Burbury and myself have been working with Michelle and 2 of her students, Dan Remnitz and Melissa Youl. Our primary focus has been with the importance of safe, clean drinking water in relation to primary/public health care. Both students are researching the fundamental importance of water to human existence, based on the findings from The World Health Organization (WHO), verifying the value of clean safe drinking water in humans to prevent illness and poor health and development. Both Melissa and Dan will present academic papers on the significance of safe, clean drinking water, which will be useful to CfA, both in Australia as well as in Tanzania.

Finally, Michelle and Dan will make a poster for CfA, on the importance of safe, clean drinking water, which we will be able to use as a marketing tool for the plight of our impoverished people within the Tarime communities. They will utilize CfA photographs and findings coupled with their own research for the posters.

The container project has engaged much enthusiasm within our local community. We have 2 containers currently being filled. Wendy Dalton, the principal’s assistant from Youngtown Primary School is coordinating the 1st container, which is located at Youngtown Primary School. Our 2nd container is located at The Launceston Church Grammar School, which is being coordinated by Allison Bassano.

CfA purchased the container at Youngtown Primary School at a cost of $1,600.00. Tony Turvey from Millers Pty Ltd, Hobart generously donated the container at Grammar himself, which arrived 2 months ago. Both containers are plated until the middle of next year.

We need to be mindful of the expense of purchasing our containers, as well as the shipping costs. It costs nearly $10,000.00 to purchase and ship a container from Tasmania to Tarime, hence the reason why we are being incredibly selective and unfortunately rather ruthless with culling when we pack our containers.

Alison Smith and her team of dedicated workers at Sacred Heart Primary School have been working tirelessly fundraising, and collecting books, pens, pencils etc to provide much needed educational goods and aids for our Education Resource Centre. Alison and her team are collecting used and purchasing new back packs, and filling them with exercise books and pens and pencils.

Allison Bassano has been working untiringly to source, collect, sort and pack much needed educational books for The Resource Centre. Allison has generously allocated a room under her house for this purpose. Allison is sorting and cataloguing the books into boxes and black plastic containers, she has generously purchased herself from “chicken feed”. These boxes will be used in Tarime for the local teachers to carry the books safely back to their schools, when they borrow from The Resource Centre. Our local community, schools and libraries have been incredibly charitable with their donations of books.

We are not sending computers at this stage, because there will be no power in The Resource Centre. We will however, look into the feasibility of having power installed in The Resource Centre at a later date.

I spoke with Dr Winani a month ago; he informed me he was waiting to purchase a truck before he commenced building the school in Tarime. Dr Winani assures me that The Education Resource Centre, which will be located in his school, will be complete early next year. I tried to ring Dr Winani Monday 4th May, to get a recent update; he unfortunately was away and will not be available to speak to until next Monday11th May.

The knitters throughout the state of Tasmania continue to knit a never ending over abundant supply of infant’s jumpers, blankets, babies clothing and toys. They joy and purpose this project brings to our elderly citizens is overwhelmingly rewarding. With the knitting projects we really see how our projects benefit both communities local and abroad.

Unfortunately, we have an oversupply of these beautiful products, and we will have to put a halt onto the knitters.

Jane Zeuchner and Joy Hope have been incredibly industrious collecting much needed goods for our containers. Jane and Joy have sourced and abundance of blankets, clothing, uniforms etc and carefully sorted, washed and packaged these goods ready for our containers.

Our Albino student Sarafina aged 3 years has been successfully enrolled at St Jude’s School. Paul and Kara with Abdulla oversaw the enrollment of Sarafina. The total cost for this year is Tsh829,500.00, which equates to $830.00A, this money has been paid by CfA.

Kellie Chugg has compiled a 7 minute DVD for CfA, showing the work we have and are doing in Tarime. There are 2 DVD’s, the first one has been done to music, and the second one has a voice over which explains our work and the needs of the people in Tarime. Kellie has done this free of charge, however, Abe’s Audio is doing a voiceover which will cost $80.00.

Our fundraising exploits are continuing with much success. Wendy Dalton, Shareen Thomas and the Youngtown Primary School community have worked incredibly hard to raise $4680.00. Wendy Dalton had a sausage sizzle at Bunnings on Saturday 14th March, raising $876.00. Wendy was helped by Henry and Wilma Dubbeld, Allison Bassano, Rob Van der Elst and I. The grade 3-4 students had a cake stall, another class raised money with a car wash, Wendy sent out sponsorship letters to local business obtaining donations of $50-$200. This money is currently being held in The Youngtown Primary School account, tagged CfA.

Alison Smith and her dedicated team from Sacred Heart Primary School have raised $4569.00. This money has been raised through a Garden Walk: $2150.00 and a Raffle: $2419.00. The team has used this money to purchase coloured pencils, pens, exercise books, erasers, etc, as well as 60x Back Packs, and a number of Teacher’s Boxes and Pamper Packs. The money is being held at The Bendigo Bank, account no. 132812512, under the name of Wendy Cocker.

Gill Reid has $3807.75 in Heritage Isle Credit Union, account no., 43989 for CfA. This money was raised by the original committee, called The Tarime Goodwill Foundation Committee. This committee organized the original container for Tarime, as well as the 2nd container containing the ambulance. This committee no longer exists; however, many of the original committee members are still involved with CfA.

January 2009 John Swindells, Jane Zeuchner and Olivia Mensah- Kamara followed a shipping container filled with educational, health and general living goods and equipment to The Kristan Refugee Camp in Ghana. Olivia had previously spent 5 years living in the camp after escaping the atrocities she lived through in Sierra Leone before relocating to Tasmania as a refugee.

Olivia and John approached Peter and I on 18th June 2008 with a request for help. We decided to support them with the knowledge and help to organize, fill and deliver a shipping container to the needy refugees living in the refugee camp.

John was currently making a film on Olivia and her amazing life.

I linked Olivia into Larmenier Primary School, where the school enthusiastically embraced the collecting, sorting and packing of much needed goods into the shipping container. CfA paid for the shipping container, at a cost of $1650.00. Angela Knight coordinated this project when I left for my 6 week trip to Tarime.

Olivia organized a fundraising group called “The Circle of Dreams” who raised $6940.43 towards funding the project. Their accounts were audited by accountant Frank Bearup.

CfA funded Olivia’s airfare and vaccinations, the final cost being $4530.00.

The container was filled with books, pens, pencils, clothing, sewing machines, medical supplies, bicycles, computers, cooking utensils and agricultural tools.

The container left Tasmania and arrived at Tema Harbor 6 weeks later, at a cost of $5,647.04. The container was shipped with Toll Global Forwarding.

Bishop Charles Aygin Asare at The World Miracle Church International with the help of his personal assistant Suzan Hanson coordinated the customs clearance, logistics and delivery of the container to the Kristan Refugee Camp.

John, Olivia and Jane spent 2 weeks in Ghana, where they oversaw the clearance of the container, and delivered the much needed goods to the refugees living in the Kristan Refugee Camp.

Overall, CfA has developed a number of worthwhile obtainable projects which focus on health and education. We are successfully working towards our objectives with much community support and enthusiasm.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Board and Committee Members of Care for Africa, as well as our local community, Launceston, who have so generously donated their time, knowledge, skills, funds and expertise to allow or the success and development of Care for Africa.

 

DIANA BUTLER

5TH MAY 2009

 

REFERENCES

Pruss-Ustun, Bos, Gore, Bartram; World Health Organization