Hamilton College Team Blog: Tanzania, June 2018

Hamilton College Team Blog: Tanzania, June 2018

Monday 25th June 2018

"Today we started with orientation and learned all about what to do and what not to do during our expedition in Tanzania. We played some games that helped us bond more as a team. In the afternoon we explored Moshi by taking a walk through all the markets. We had some quiet time before dinner so we got to know the group from Galashiels by playing with the children in the garden together and playing games into the evening. It was a good first day!"  (Alice)

Tuesday 26th June 2018

On Tuesday morning, after having breakfast, we headed out to the TAWREF office to meet with the organisation. We received a warm welcome in the form of a song, which was appreciated by all and reciprocated by us. We were then given a present on the work TAWREF do, and had an opportunity to purchase gifts from their shop.

In the afternoon, we visited the worksite and met Lillian, the beneficiary of the home we are building. We also met the Fundis (builders) who we would be helping construct the house. We were all equally exhausted after a few hours of hard work.

We then visited Kilimanjaro Coffee Lounge for dinner, where we all enjoyed pizzas, burritos and similar western foods.

Altogether a good day shared in the warmth of friends; new and old. (Callum).

"The bus provides a suitable sleeping place for us as we travelled to the work site for our first full day. Our work began carrying rocks to the work site which was quite a distance away. The rocks ranged in size and weight so it started to become more challenging as the day went on.

Encouragement from Frank the Fundi and the gang helped us get the task done and keep group moral and we soon moved the rocks over half way towards the site.
Everyone was exhausted by the end of the day and were prepared for a relaxing evening and to get dinner. We then spent the rest of the evening organising some donations for the projects we are going to visit and the family that we are building for."  (Liam.)

Thursday 28th June 2018
Today we spent the morning visiting Moshi Christian Children Centre to play with the many children who live there. When we arrived we received a warm welcome from the staff and children. We made loom bands, played with balloons and threw beach balls with the younger kids while the older kids played football against us - they won 7-1!
In the afternoon we went to the work site where we transported sand across the site. The kids from around the local community also joined in with the carrying so we have them some balloons and paper planes to play with. In the evening we had a Swahili lesson where we all got familiar with common phrases and words that will help when we are on the worksite and around Moshi." (Pippa)


Sunday 29th June 2018

"We started our day at the worksite, moving bricks from the roadside down to the worksite. We then mixed cement and passed it to the Fundis using a chain. This meant that by the time we left for lunch, the foundations were complete and this was very encouraging as we could see all the progress we had made.

After this, we visited a completed home which was built by vine trust in 2015. It was really good to see the work we were doing in action and how it impacts the lives of people we are helping. It was also a surprise when the boy living in the house had visited us on the previous day. This made it even more personal to us." (Rebekah)

Saturday 30th June 2018

Today we spent a half day on the worksites. It was a slightly earlier start than usual but it meant that the temperature was cooler when working. It was really encouraging to see the walls beginning to take shape and we had lots of fun playing with the local children.
We went shopping in the afternoon where we picked up some souvenirs and gifts for family. Lots of us also got to have some fun haggling for good prices at stalls.
Our evening was then finished with a talent show that consisted of acts from the leaders and pupils from all schools. (Claire)


Sunday 1st July 2018

We got up early today to go to church at the Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre which was really good and we were welcomed by everyone there. We even got to see them celebrate a one year wedding anniversary of two people from the local community.

We then came back to Berea and had a few hours to chill and then we left for Upendo Orphanage. At the orphanage we gave out teddies and other toys like balloons and bubbles which was really nice to see the children playing with.

We went to the Union Cafe because it was Eilidh’s birthday and then headed back to Berea for dinner. We played a game of Spoons which Alice won and then we played some games and went to bed. (Anna.)

Monday 2nd & Tuesday 3rd July 2018

Our last day in Moshi before leaving for safari involved a packed schedule which started on the worksite. By now the Fundis had erected the walls to the point of the window ledge and the progress of the team was beginning to become visible.
We spent our half day moving buckets and bags of sand along the roughly half a mile stretch to the worksite, in order to assist in the mixing of cement.
We then returned to Berea where we rapidly changed and headed Fuka, an ELCT project built by Vine Trust. There we were met with hundreds of enthusiastic children and were given a tour of "The Sarah Hardie's House" where some of the orphans who attended Fuka lived. For half an hour classes came outside and participated in activities that we had organised such as football, party games and crafting activities.
Later that evening we, along with Millburn Academy, travelled to Umoja Hostel for our partner dinner and ceilidh with TAWREF. We were treated to a delicious buffet dinner followed by a vote of thanks from Dafrosa, the director of TAWREF. Of course later that night we danced to both Scottish and Tanzanian traditional dances.

A busy and productive final day before leaving for Tarangire and Ngorongoro for safari in the morning. (Blake)

Wednesday 4th & Thursday 5th July 2018

We headed off at 5 o’clock in the morning to the safari!! It was a long journey but all worth it when we arrived at the gates and were welcomed by some wildebeest. As the day went on we saw zebras, gazelles and were lucky enough to witness seeing an elephant just metres from our jeep! Apart from our doughnuts being stolen from the monkeys our first day on Tarangire safari was amazing. We then went to our campsite where we stayed in tents and we could look at the amazing stars!

The next day we had another early start and headed to Ngorongoro safari where we saw lions, buffalo, hippos and even rhinos, this meant we completed the hunt for the Tanzanian big 5 throughout the two days! The safari was an amazing experience and a great part of the trip. (Jenna)

Friday 6th July 2018

"After 2 long days on the safari, we were all surprised to find out we were getting a longer lie in as breakfast was at 9 o’clock the next morning instead of the normal times being between 7 and 8am.

Finishing breakfast we headed off to the work site to find there had been an incredible advance to Lillian’s house, done by the Fundis and other people of the community. It was great to see how far the home had come on after our group had been away at the safari the previous couple days.

Having only a half day at the work site, we had a few hours to go back to Berea to start packing for our journey home the following day.

Once everyone had each done a bit of packing we had to get ready to leave for dinner at the Indian restaurant deli chez. Everyone was very excited as it was our final full night in Tanzania and many people had ordered steak or chicken sizzlers and other foods we had not eaten in a while. There was also some new and interesting Indian delicacies that some people tried such as a dessert cause a Felooga. So after a great day and a great dinner, we headed back to the college where we chilled and relaxed before bed." (Katie)

Saturday 7th July 2018

"We all woke up to the last of the morning rays of Tanzania. The atmosphere was a mix of sad and underlying excitement - I reckon it was the promise of western toilets and warm showers. We all clambered onto the bus for the last journey to the worksite to see Lillian and the fundis for the last time, and of course to experience some more Tanzanian driving. It was genuinely heartwarming to see all our work over the past 2 weeks evolve into a house and our send off from Emanuel and the fundis ( especially frank) was lovely. With the bed we bought for Lillian we went to the church where they graciously stored it until the house was finished.

After a couple more stop offs in the shops on the way home to Berea, we all enjoyed the last of Bryson's dinners and finished our packing. After a couple more photoshoots we filed into the bus, craning our necks to see the last of our 2 week accommodation and yelling a lasting goodbye to the people that made it home. As the bus trundles down the road towards the plane that will carry us away from this amazing country, we gaze at the sun as it sets on our time in Tanzania.

The thought floating through my mind was, we came here and we can't all change the world, but as we drive away from Lillian I realise we have changed her world, and that's a pretty amazing thing. (Kathie)

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