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Home-Building Expedition Blogs

October Home-Building 2017 - Blog 2

The first week of the October Home-Building Expedition has flown by and the team are making fantastic progress on the worksites. After a half day supporting the fundis, or local builders, on Wednesday morning, the team spent the afternoon playing with the children who stay at Kimashuku Children's Home. Kimashuku was built with support from Vine Trust volunteers between 2011 and 2013 and is always a favourite for new and returning volunteers to visit. After the first week on the worksites, the houses are beginning to take shape. Once the sites have been cleared and the foundations marked out and dug, stones are…

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October Home-Building Expedition - Blog 1

Our October Home-Building Expedition Team left for Moshi, Tanzania early Sunday morning, with Team Leader Wendy already in-country ready to welcome them to Tanzania. Wendy was honoured to be able to attend the home-opening ceremony of Bibi Angus and her grandchildren, whose new home had been constructed with the support of our School Expedition team from West Calder and James Young high schools in June/July earlier this year. The home-building team arrived safely on Sunday evening to be greeted by our Tanzanian coordinators, Ben & Elly, and Wendy. The team took Monday morning to cover some inportant information during their in-country orientation…

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Robertson Trust T20 - Blog 5

Our final day in Tanzania was filled with warm goodbyes. In the morning we visited both home-building sites and were able not only to say our final goodbyes to the families and the fundis, but also to see the incredible progress that had been made in the past few days. The team was astounded by the dedication and hard work of the fundis, and was amazed to see the homes nearing completion. Having visited the sites, the volunteers were able to do some last minute shopping before heading back to Umoja Hostel for a final feedback and reflection session. The team all agreed…

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Robertson Trust T20 - Blog 4

Monday was a productive and emotional last day on our worksites. It has been wonderful to see the houses become homes over the past week or so. The team working on Efata’s site spent the day carrying water and rocks to the site for the fundis, learning new Swahili phrases and even being proposed to! On James’ site, the volunteers supported the fundis as they dug a large hole in the garden to provide soil to complete the floor foundations, enabling the fundis to begin pouring cement for a sturdy finish. Early on Tuesday morning, the T20 team set off on safari! We arrived at Tarangire National Park mid-morning and, within…

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Robertson Trust T20 - Blog 3

Our Robertson Trust #TanzaniaTwenty team has had a very productive couple of days, with plenty of rewarding moments. In light of the challenges faced in building Efata's new house, the full T20 team came together for one day to support the fundis (local builders) in the construction of the family's home. It was wonderful to share time together as a full expedition group on the worksite and, through strong team work in collecting water, passing bricks along the (very long) volunteer chain, and even  attempting to cement bricks, a huge leap in progress was made. Efata lives with her husband, supporting 5 young children - aged 3 to 15, with 12 year old twins, Noela…

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Robertson Trust T20 - Blog 2

We often hear stories of families in Africa walking miles each day to collect water, but sometimes this can feel like a distant problem to those of us living in the UK. Yesterday, for our team of Robertson Trust volunteers working on the site of Efata’s new home, this familiar story became a reality.  When mixing the cement for the building's secure foundations, many litres of water are required to create the appropriate consistency. The closest water source was a 30 minute walk away, through sunflower and maize plantations, over dry river beds, and up a steep hill via a twisty, red dirt track. The team spent most of the…

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