Latest from Ndala…
In November 2013 the Early Development Centre in Ndala was completed and within a month children were attending the centre. For the first time the preschool children of the village were able to enjoy the comfort of the beautiful new building.
In October 2014 after many months of research we were able to find a company who produced preschool books which were appropriate for the children, and these were sent to the Centre. Titles included ABC Reading Book and the Kiswahili equivalent Alfabeti za Kiswahili. Delivery was made by the kind people of the bookshop in Dar Es Salaam jumping on a bus for the 200 mile journey to Ndala!
Early Development Centre, Ndala Tanzania
In October 2013 building work started on a small piece of land in the village of Ndala in the district of Shinyanga. The project was to provide classrooms, an office, a kitchen and two sanitation block for a community based childcare centre, specialising in providing pre-school education for local 3 – 6 year olds. Funded entirely by Lara’s Foundation, the project was run in partnership with Save the Children and Raleigh International.
The Early Childhood Development (ECD) centre provides this facility to some of the most marginalised children in the suburb of Ndala. A large proportion of them are vulnerable children affected by HIV/AIDs, cared for by guardians in the community. “The district of Shinyanga is one of the least developed of Tanzanian regions and as such it is characterised by the high prevalence of mistreatment of children, low school enrolment rates and low literacy rates amongst adults. Despite large diamond and gold mines, the area’s infrastructure remains undeveloped and it has a low per capita income compared to other Tanzanian regions.” Augustino Mwashiga, Save the Children programme manager.
The centre sits within the heart of the community. It is a social institution run by community members, who manage all fundraising and resources for the centre. Building the centre has provided employment opportunities for local fundi (workmen) and on a longer term, provides employment for teachers and cooks. The ECD also provides respite to guardians of the children attending, allowing time for them to work whilst the children are at the centre, and providing a hot meal for each child attending.
At the opening ceremony in April 2014 the ECD was dedicated to Lara Jones with these words: “Lara’s Foundation is proud and happy to have played a part in the provision of this ECD. Our funding of the centre has been made possible by the outstanding fundraising efforts of Lara’s family and friends. We owe our commitment to continue our efforts, to Lara. She is our eternal source of energy and inspiration. She is the reason we funded this centre. We hope that it will provide the necessary education to the children of Ndala to enable them to progress to further education without disadvantage.”
“Thank you very much. We appreciate what Lara’s Foundation, Save the Children and Raleigh International have done for us. We face many challenges when it comes to education, especially in early childhood development. We can now take a step ahead into providing better futures for our children through education. So we thank you, all the organisations, our donors and all the volunteers who have contributed from the start until today. You are most welcome here in Ndala.” Dixon, the Village Executive Officer in Ndala.
Some text and images taken from Raleigh International’s blog.