Meet Rahema

Children: Calvin (15), Frederick (12), Ntiwe (8), Stephen (5)

“I was married and lived in Arusha where I had a small business. My husband would take all the money and get drunk. Then he would come home and beat me. I was married for 14 years before I divorced him. I came back to Hedaru to start a new life, but I was depressed and stressed worrying about my children and didn’t know what to do . I joined the Empower Tanzania Gender Based Violence support group. I had group and individual counseling and learned new skills. I am comfortable now and have new friends. I have a new life. I had nothing, but I am now capable of earning money to buy a house and land. I will do this by next year. Empower Tanzania has helped me to a much better life.”

This is Part I of a three-part series on our BEYOND Gender Based Violence program. Check back on the blog for more stories of incredible women like Rahema. Learn more about the program by clicking HERE.

Integrated Farming class of 2014!!!

Empower Tanzania’s EPIC Integrated Farming Project doubled in size this week as the first annual new farmer training took place in Hedaru!  Twenty-one new farmers attended the three day seminar to learn how to prepare to receive their new dairy goats in July.  Topics covered included care and feeding of the goats, how to breed them and deliver the kids, and how to take care of the medical needs of the animals.  There was also extensive training in the specialized construction of the pens that allow the goats to live in a healthy environment, and allow the farmers to harvest the manure for composting. Continue reading

The POWER of goats!

What is the most powerful force in Tanzania?
A person with a dream and a way to get there!

Integrated farming appeals to women in the Same District., who do most of the farming.  Improved techniques that bring increased income impact them in a huge way.

Integrated farming appeals to women in the Same District., who do most of the farming. Improved techniques that bring increased income impact them in a huge way.

Integrated farming appeals to women in the Same District., who do much of the farming. Improved techniques that bring increased income impact them in a huge way.  Women make up at least 50% of all our participants in the project. Continue reading

The Impact of Improving Women’s Health

woman holding a baby suffering from Malaria.  Malaria is responsible for over 60,000 deaths in Tanzania per year, and is the leading cause of death in children under 5, and pregnant women.

A mother holds a baby suffering from Malaria. Malaria is responsible for over 60,000 deaths in Tanzania per year, and is the leading cause of death in children under 5.

SIGNIFICANCE.

When you donate your hard earned money to a non-profit like Empower Tanzania, you want to know if it made a difference.  Isn’t that what we all want?  To do something significant to improve our world?  Here is a program that is blowing even our minds with its effectiveness and impact! Continue reading

Chickens added to Nanny Project

Chickens are the newest residents at ten of our Nanny Project Farms in Hedaru, improving breakfasts every day!  Each year the farmers choose a new product to add to their farms, and this year, poultry was the unanimous winner in the unofficial farmer poll.  It appears that it was a good idea.

Chickens are easy to raise, and begin earning their keep almost immediately.  Six hens will product 3-4 eggs a day from the start.

Chickens are easy to raise, and begin earning their keep almost immediately. Five hens will product 3-4 eggs a day from the start.

 

Ten farmers are participating in this farm expansion using the model Empower Tanzania has developed.

  1. They attend a 3-day seminar on poultry keeping.  They are taught how to build chicken houses and take care of their birds, including how to make the feed from local available products, and how to keep the birds in a clean environment to prevent disease.
  2. They visit a few very successful poultry operations, and are able to ask questions and see the concepts in action.
  3. They return home, and are responsible for building a chicken house, at their own expense, and getting everything ready to receive the birds.
  4. Once they pass inspection by the committee, they get 5 females and a cock.
Nanny Project farmer, Tunzo Simon

Nanny Project farmer, Tunzo Simon

 

Tunzo Simon is so inspired by a woman he saw raising 300 chickens, and the concept that this could be much more than just a small family business, he has built a chicken house large enough for 200-300 birds, and has plans to expand to as many as 500.  Mr. Simon’s response, when asked about his training was, “I am seeing poultry in a whole new way.  The old Tunzo is now gone, and in his place is a new Tunzo with a much larger vision!”

Tunzo is one of the original Nanny Project farmers, and was elected by his fellow farmers to be the leader of the farmers in the project.  His job is to visit the sites, encourage the individual farmers, and help the committee identify and organize training that will help the farmers grow and expand their farms.  He is instrumental in the success of the program.

 

 

 

 

Chicken coops come in different sizes.  This one is designed to have several dozen hens, feeding eggs to the family for daily protein, and selling some at market.

Chicken coops come in different sizes. This one is designed to have several dozen hens, giving eggs to the family for daily protein, with enough extra to sell at the market.

Tunzo working on building his new chicken coop.

Tunzo working on building his new chicken coop.

Tunzo's finished chicken coop will house several hundred birds, and allow them space to be outside, but safe from predators.

Tunzo’s finished chicken coop will house several hundred birds, and allow them space to be outside, but safe from predators.

In fact, this is exactly what Empower Tanzania hoped for.  According to the Same District Livestock Officer, nearly 50% of the chickens currently being sold in the local markets are coming from South Africa, because this part of Tanzania has a terrible chicken shortage.  The District would like to dramatically expand chicken production among local farmers, and is offering a five-day course to prepare farmers to do large-scale poultry production.  The District Government is very much in favor of Empower Tanzania adding poultry farming to our Nanny Project, so as we expand into new locations in 2014, we will expand under the new name “Integrated Farming Project” and begin farms with a choice of either chickens or goats.  We anticipate that more than half of the sites will choose to begin with chickens.

ISU Interns in Tanzania

Interns working in Tanzania this summer

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

During the 2011/2012 academic year, ETI and Iowa State University established a partnership in which students from the Global Resource Systems program have the opportunity to help fulfill ETI’s mission in Tanzania.  Global Resource Systems is an interdisciplinary major that emphasizes global and cross-cultural engagement.  The program equips students with a strong technical competency in an academic area (such as agriculture, environmental studies, or public heath) and geographical region of their choice.

The first group of seven students will fulfill their internships this spring and early summer, with a variety of projects planned, including the following:

  • Tree-planting and community health planning in Shighatini
  • Grain amaranth studies in Same
  • Digital mapping of natural resource and social/health data in the Hedaru area

Eli Kisimbo, ETI’s Development Director in Tanzania, will provide assistance with planning and implementing these internships.  While the internships are not a direct component of existing ETI projects, they are being conducted with some of our partner organizations, such as the Shighatini Lutheran Church, the Hedaru Lutheran Church, and the Pare Lutheran Diocese.  Furthermore, the work the interns do will help us with some of our ETI projects and directly fulfill our mission of working with rural Tanzanians to improve the quality of their lives.

We are appreciative for this new relationship with ISU, and we look forward to the continued growth of the partnership.

Read Dylan Clark’s blog about his experience in Hedaru doing a mapping project.