Posts Tagged ‘Tanzania’

Read International on Me and My Net

Friday, October 28th, 2011

During a volunteering trip to Tanzania with READ International I was part of a team which distributed books to schools. We also renovated a library at Kilakala Secondary School; an all girl’s boarding school in. We were pleased to see that each student had been provided with their own mosquito net to cover their bed.  During the renovation we asked the girls to take part in the competition and they were very enthusiastic about the opportunity.  We found out that the School had a Malaria Club, so we sat down with the student members and, although they were shy at first, they soon became more confident and a few days later the word of the competition had spread around the School and entries flooded in from all age groups. We received entries that were really informative and in some cases shocking.  The young girls have experienced malaria first hand and write about it so casually that reading about the reality of it was upsetting. The essays showed their knowledge of Malaria, including statistics and data, showing the success of the Malaria Club.  Some of the entries included drawings and animations which the students enjoyed producing.  They loved having a chance to draw and express themselves in a way that they usually do not have the opportunity to do.  The students put so much effort into the competition and presented their entries proudly with beautiful handwriting; this was a testament to their commitment and dedication to their studies.  Overall, the content was well written and I enjoyed having a chance to read some of the students’ work and see the quality of their English writing.  For us at READ the competition allowed us to be more involved with the students and gave us an insight into their abilities. The students had a great knowledge of Malaria which taught me a thing or two!

The competition touches on a really important issue in Africa and giving the students an opportunity to write about it helped them to remember the importance of prevention.

 

Spotlight on Tanzania House of Talent

Thursday, August 18th, 2011

Tanzania House of Talent (THT) is a non-profit organisation working on enabling disadvantaged youths in Tanzania to develop talent in performing arts through a number of campaigns, one of which it ‘Z!nduka Malaria Haikubaliki.’

Launched in 2010, the objective of this innovative campaign is to create a call to action amongst the youth of Tanzania to adopt malaria prevention measures and become the catalyst of a society that no longer accepts malaria as a norm.

One of the most important and effective strategies in achieving their goals is using education to change attitude to the disease and implement effective interventions. Their work in 2011 has centred on the ‘Theatre in Education’ programme. Using music, dance and theatre, young people from the THT have held performances across Tanzania to 40,000 youths, exposing them to issues around malaria including effective prevention methods and seeking early treatment. THT has also conducted workshops with students giving them detailed information about malaria, and enabling discussion on the issues that affect them.

THT youth performing for the Theatre in Education programme

The programme has also established 40 youth clubs across the country, training 930 youths with the skills and knowledge to get involved in the campaign themselves. The clubs have been instrumental in engaging and mobilising local residents and local government officers to continue the fight against malaria. Other Z!nduka club activities have involved malaria themed song contests, poster exhibitions and community workshops, and future plans involve a mentor scheme to engage primary school.

The Z!nduka malaria campaign is also involved in the governments’ Universal Coverage Campaign. The THT have been working with the Tanzanian Red Cross to implement the ‘Hang Up’ campaign, aiming to ensure all nets distributed are used correctly. This included Z!nduka goodwill ambassador Fid Q engaged in house to house visits, a free public concert and worked with local artists in Mwanza to provide information and motivation in the community.

Zinduka! Goodwill Ambassador Fid Q speaks to the crowd at a free public concert in Mwanza

To find out more about Tanzania House of Talent, and their work on malaria through the ‘Z!nduka Malaria Haikubaliki’ campaign, visit their website here

The RCS is grateful to THT for their support for Me and My Net, and the Malaria Youth Summit in Dar es Salaam in July 2011.

Malaria Youth Summits in East Africa

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

In July, the RCS Me and My Net team was in Nairobi, Kenya and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania to run two events for students in each city.

Both the events were big successes, and everyone in attendance was impressed by the students’ passion for preventing malaria in their countries.  Overall, the events reached over 100 students aged 12-16.

In Nairobi, students learnt more about malaria from PSI Kenya, and also demonstrated how to correctly hang a mosquito net.  Following this, the participants split into small groups to discuss the challenges malaria poses and the solutions which government and young people can offer, facilitated by Cosmos Education.  Representatives from each group then presented back to the others.  You can see the summary of these discussions in the Me and My Net Nairobi Communique.  After lunch, the groups designed creative campaigns to promote malaria prevention, which they presented to invited guests, including HE Charles Mogotsi, Botswanan High Commissioner to Kenya, and Dean of Commonwealth High Commissions in Nairobi.

In Dar es Salaam, students were delighted with a performance by Malaria Goodwill Ambassadors from Tanzania House of Talent, and also a talk by popular hip hop star, Fid Q, on his experiences in speaking to malaria-affected communities in Tanzania.  Students took part in a panel discussion, with representatives from the Ministry of Health and Social Care’s NATNETS programme, PSI Tanzania and COMMIT.  They then watched the Tanzanian film, Chumo, which was produced with the support of COMMIT and Johns Hopkins University.  In the afternoon, a creative workshop was facilitated by READ International, and campaigns designed were presented to guests, including the British Deputy High Commissioner in Tanzania, Susie Kitchens.

All the campaigns produced in the two events will be entered into the Me and My Net competition.  Find out how you can take part here.

The RCS is thankful to all the schools, students and teachers who attended, and its partners in each city for their support -

In Nairobi: Malezi School, Cosmos Education and PSI Kenya
In Dar es Salaam: the British High Commission, the British Council, Tanzania House of Talent, READ International, COMMIT, the Ministry of Health and Social Care’s NATNETS programme, PSI Tanzania, DFID.

See the photos from the two events below:

Nairobi:

Dar es Salaam: