Pat and Neilus were in Tanzania from Tues 25.02.2014 to Mon 10.03.2014
They arrived in Dar at 7.30am on Tues – they were met by Fr Msaky who stayed with them until 5.30 pm – they met the following groups:
Camara: The aim of the meeting was to aid CAMARA (an Irish NGO that gets schools in Tanzania equipped with reconditioned computers) to instal computer labs in schools in Pemba – for every 10 computers in a school, they train 5 teachers for one week – they require 10 such schools to make maintenance viable – such a project would cost €12,000 – on their return from Pemba, PSI gave the names of 18 interested schools to the CEO of CAMARA and the name of a computer technician who works in IT with the Dept. of Education – sponsorship will be sought for this worthwhile project – This project was met with huge enthusiasm and 100% co-operation so there are great possibilities for this project to come to fruition provided the donors can be found.
GLRA (a German NGO that look after leprosy and TB in Africa) – the aim of this meeting was to get the assistance of GLRA with the refurbishment of solar electricity in the Makundeni village with leprosy in Pemba – GLRA will research the value of solar versus mains electricity in Makundeni
Heifer International (a USA NGO which had prepared the Makangale group (MADA) to receive the Bothar cows) – the aim of the meeting was to report on developments in the Makangale project and discuss how this project could succeed . We discussed the need of ensuring sufficient liquid Nitrogen to maintain 2,500 Jersey AI straws that VIVA (Volunteers in Irish Veterinary Assistance) would like to send to Pemba . We also discussed a market for milk, lack of grass and use supplements . Heifer International staff made out a baseline survey for the cow beneficiaries which has been completed and is now being analyzed.
Irish Embassy: The aim of this meeting was to report on Pemba Support projects. PSI met the Ag committee who are busy reviewing the 2011 to 2015 development plan. We were informed that there is an EU delegation of Ambassadors going to Pemba in March who may be interested in seeing Pemba Support programmes .
Ali Hamad (Manager of the Well Drilling Company). Ali has been commissioned to dig two deep wells in Pemba for PSI. He explained the process of digging and maintaining wells. Ali is also interested in helping PSI with its projects including the installation of electricity in Makundeni Leper Village. As his people came from Kojani Island (to the east of Pemba), Ali has a special interest in helping this island out of its poverty. While in Pemba the volunteers got involved in setting up new projectts, visiting established ones and making contact with many people and communities on the island.
Asha’s project: This is a new project involving 15 people, mostly women in vegetable growing. They have an acre in a valley which they rent. There is a source of water on the side of a hill. Here they will put a reservoir from which they will drip irrigate their vegetable crops. They will start sowing before the rains. ASSP (Ag Services Support Programme) looks after Ag sector dev.
Low vision project : In 2011 we started working with Dr Siti who is an optometrist. We bring recycled glasses to her and she, and her assistant Dr Rashid reuse the lens and/or frames to assist the people with low vision. she needs lenses of strength -20 , -15 and +10 and she needs protective goggles for people working on stone cutting We also assist with hearing aids for the ENT department with Dr Issa.
People with special needs: PSI supports a young man called Ibrahim who suffers from cerebral palsy and who has no services. The volunteers always enjoy visiting him and help the family by supplying incontinence pads for night wear. There is a hope that an Italian NGO will soon open a physiotherapy unit in Chake hospital which will benefit people like Ibrahim and the three disabled children in Michungwani who are also being supported by PSI. While in Dar es Salaam the volunteers visited Asha and Mariam, two deaf and dumb girls from Pemba who are training in tailoring at a special Government training centre in Yombo. The fees for these young women are being sponsored by families in Clare.
A meeting was held with Giacomo and Giovanni (from Italy) They are members of the NGO Fondazione Ivo de Carneri. This NGO focuses all its energy on helping Pemba. They founded the PHL Foundation for research into tropical diseases in Chake. Now their foundation is about to extend to Agriculture and they are interested in working in partnership with Pemba Support.
Makundeni (village with leprosy): Each person with leprosy (23 in total) were presented with a prepared hygiene bag. Raiya (Sheha for Makundeni) was present. They all voted for grid above solar electricity. In their shambas they will grow cassava, rice, potatoes, mboga mboga.They feel that they do not have sufficient education to take care of the land. They asked us to provide them witha course in Ag. PSI is now hoping to dig a deep well in the village to provide much needed water for domestic use and for drip irrigation for their crops.
Pemba Clove Honey: This group is comprised of about 15 people. They have all been trained in bee keeping but need equipment. They were very appreciative of the 4 million TSH from PSI.
MADA (Makangale Ag Dev Association) Meeting: The volunteers visited the newly established project which has been funded by Bothar and managed by PSI. Eight Friesian and seven Ayreshire in-calf heifers and one bull had just arrived and the whole community was very excited. Hamza, the manager, described their difficult journey from Arusha to the North of Pemba Island. The meeting discussed the many challenges of food and water provision and the exciting prospect of money from milk, new calves and a bright future for the area because of this project.The volunteers visited all 16 farms and saw, at first hand, the efforts of the farmers at building sheds and taking care of the animals. We also visited the local school where PSI supports eleven poor students by paying for their uniforms and school fees.
Kizimbani chicken project: The volunteers visited this project which is now one year in operation. There are some issues with food provision but generally the project is going well. An incubator would help these people to make profit from their work.
Tailoring project: This is in the same compound as the chicken project and is still in its infancy. They have classes on Wed and Fri but they need to train a trainer. It is hoped that this project will be used for both for education and business.
Meetings with Dept of Agriculture: Meetings were held with key people in the Dept. of Agriculture. Suleiman Mbarouk, the head of livestock is anxious for help with AI for the farmers to increase milk production and Omar Mussa will help to arrange a course in vegetable growing for the people in Makundeni Leper Village.
Meeting with Maua (head of Social services): As Maua has a special responsibility for disabled people, the plans for helping in Makundeni were discussed. Maua has spearheaded three successful projects in partnetrship with PSI to date and is an important person in networking with the needy and poorest people on the island.
Kojani (an island east of Pemba): The highlight of this trip for the volunteers was a visit to Kojani Island with Ali Hamad. It was important to see, at first hand, the isolation, the density of the population, the poverty and the lack of basic services suffered by these people. On visiting the school we were told that there are 1,000 children attending and at least another 1,000 who have no education and who spend their days fishing.There is a great need to support this island.
Education support: After leaving Pemba the volunteers spent two night in Unguja where they met many young people from Pemba who have been supported by PSI over the past seven years. Many of them are now in successful careers in the florishing hotel business on that island and they were loud in their appreciation of the Irish people who gave them an opportunity in life. In Dar es Salaam the volunteers visited Yombo, a training centre for students with special needs where PSI is funding the education of Asha and Mariam, two deaf and dumb girls from Pemba.
Overall this was a most enlightening trip with lots of signs of success for PSI and with lots of possibilities for future projects and volunteers.

Vols Report for Feb – March 2014

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