Cait, Bridget and Pat travelled to Pemba from March 13th to 28th.
They visited as many PSI projects as time allowed, meeting the people, getting reports, reviewing the successes and challenges and working towards sustainability in all projects.
Overall it was a wonderful experience to see what a small NGO like PSI can achieve in a short time with small funds
and the gratitude of the people of Pemba towards the generosity of the Irish people was expressed everywhere.
Makangale dairy project:
This project in the remote North of the island was funded by Bothar and it is going from strength to strength. There are now 22 animals in the project and 12 of the heifers are impregnated with Jersey AI straws, also donated from Ireland. By September it is hoped that there will be over 30 healthy animals and milk will be plentiful in an area where, up to now, children had no access to this vital food. To support the project PSI, with some aid from the Irish Embassy in Dar es Salaam, dug a 70 metre well and now there is a plentiful supply of water for the cows and the local schools. PSI has also helped the people to set up a Farm Shop to meet the needs of the farmers and this is making profit and soon there will be two collection points for milk where evening milk can be stored in freezers to keep it fresh overnight. The volunteers witnessed a new confidence among the people, most of the children now attend school and their lives have been turned around in two years.
Vegetable growing projects:
Amazing work has taken place in Gombani Women’s project as they have harnessed the water from a small stream, pumped it into a high tank and there are drip irrigation pipes running the length of the plot producing tomatoes, eggplants and peppers all year round. At Yarobe Tupe project nearby, two tanks have been erected and water flows to water points throughout the huge site. They had finished harvesting watermelons and amaranthus and they were waiting for the big rains to arrive before replanting. Kizimbani veg project also had a good harvest of okra, melons and peppers.
Fishing project in Michungwani: PSI funded an outboard motor for a fishing boat for a co-operative of 10 fishermen in this remote area in the South of Pemba in 2013. With the profit from their fish the men were able to fund to building of a bigger boat that could go further out to sea. In March the volunteers returned with funds to help the co-operative to buy fishing nets and a sail.
Makundeni Leper Village:
For the past five years PSI, in partnership with St. Francis Leprosy Guild in London, have been supporting the 25 leprosy patients and their families who live in this village. Over those years their latrines have been rebuilt, the floors in their houses have been concreted, water taps have been brought to the village, their houses have been painted and an ongoing hygiene and supplementary food programme has been in operation. Last year each house received basic electricity and this has made a huge difference to the wellbeing of all. 2015 will see the finalization of a deep well excavation and a big drip irrigation project to create a viable, sustainable banana plantation of 2,000 plants. When the volunteers visited them the people expressed their heartfelt gratitude and are already planning to put their profits from the bananas into chickens and sewing machines!
Fundo goat project:
The volunteers were excited to visit PSI’s most remote project on the small island of Fundo, nearly an hour by motor boat from Wete. Here, 15 female and 3 buck goats have been given to 18 different families. The island has no electricity and gets water from the mainland only once or twice a week. PSI is the first NGO to support this island and it is hoped, if this is successful, to extend the project, later.
Jitume women’s group:
Last year PSI funded training and supplied 2 sewing machines to this large group of rural women making baskets. This group are well organized and creative. This time the volunteers brought money for 4 more machines to give them more design options and increase their output.
Clove Honey Project: Having supported this well organized group with funds for 30 new hives, beekeeping gear and training last year, it was evident to the volunteers that this project is moving towards sustainability. They are now selling four different sizes of honey jars to local people and are exporting to the main tourist island of Unguja. They have a new side-line of making face cream using honey and local spices.
Selemu Women’s project:
This enthusiastic group who are involved in a small soap making project were very excited to receive their first funding in March. They assured the volunteers that they would work hard to produce a good product, explore the markets and make a profit in the coming months. Time will tell. We wish them every success.
After months of planning Pemba Support Tanzania (PSTz) was established during the visit of the March volunteers. This is a group of 10 local, well educated people in Pemba who work in partnership with PSI to design, assess, support, oversee and report on new projects on the ground in Pemba. The idea is that they volunteer their expertise, vision and time to the development and support of the poor communities that they are in contact with through their own work as Government officials and/ or community leaders. We wish them every success in this pilot project as their local knowledge and wisdom are vital for sustainable development.
The volunteers met many of the students whom PSI supports in education. In some cases it was an opportunity to pay their school fees and check on their progress. At the moment PSI is supporting:
•15 children in Kizimbani Nursery school
•20 primary and Secondary school students in Makangale
•2 deaf and dumb girls training in tailoring and weaving in Yombo Training Centre in Dar es Salaam,
•2 secondary school teachers from Makangale who are taking their degree in Open University
•2 students studying for Diploma in Animal Production in Arusha
•1 student studying Tourism and Wildlife Management in Arusha
•6 students in their 3rd year training in Electrical Installation in Vitongoji Training Centre in Pemba
•Asha who is finishing her MA in Development Studies in Morogoro
•Omar Salum who is finishing his training in Tourism in Stonetown, Unguja
While the volunteers were in Pemba they spent a lot of time in planning new projects with the people which the committee hopes may come to fruition in 2015/2016. These include:
•A major new dairy cow project in Vikunguni near Chake Chake (hopeful of securing sponsorship)
•A major IT project, installing 10 computers in each of 6 schools complete with training. (Still waiting for a sponsor)
•A goat project in Kizimbani to ensure the sustainability of the Nursery school there.
•A capital only support for Field farm schools in the form of geese, certified seeds, exotic roosters, vegetable/fruit drying machine.
•A Youth project in Chake Centre
•A veg. growing project to support a family where there are 6 disabled children
•Educational support for an entrepreneur taking a course in Business management and three failed Form 4 students who need training in some skills.
Overall it was a wonderful 2 weeks and a brilliant team success.
Thanks to Bridget and Cait and Pat for their hard work, tenacity and passion to achieve so much in such a short space of time.