TEMBO Newsletter - November 2017
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When 14 year old Deborah is leaving at the end of a ten week TEMBO educational enrichment program, she leans out the window of the van and calls, “Teacher, what is the meaning of..? What is the word for…?” We laugh and she laughs but we all know that her thirst for knowledge is so deep that she can not turn it off. For Deborah and so many other girls, education means everything. It offers choices and a chance to get out of the cycle of poverty, something which destines them to a lifetime of hardship and deprivation. Education offers girls a chance to support themselves and give their future children an opportunity to become educated. TEMBO girls understand the rare gift that they are being offered…the gift of learning and they show their appreciation every day by their sheer determination. It is normal for them to demand more and more homework, to start their own private study books, to endlessly peruse dictionaries recording new vocabulary, to pour over atlases, science books and novels and to take every available moment to study their class notes. In short, they are determined to succeed.

Primary school girls hope they will have a chance to attend secondary school.

But they face many challenges. For one, the girls come from impoverished backgrounds and  resource - poor schools. Imagine a fourteen year old who has had seven years of schooling but who has never owned a book of her own, been to a library, used scissors, seen a map, or touched a computer! And imagine that same girl entering secondary school for the first time with minimal understanding of the language of instruction (English). These same girls face cultural and financial obstacles that often prevent them from going to school. Traditionally, in the Longido area, a girl could be married as young as 13 or 14  and soon after give birth to her first of many children. Financially, although education in Tanzania is now free, there are many costs which parents are obligated but unable to pay.

But TEMBO is working hard to address these challenges. In 2017 TEMBO supported 152 girls in educational enrichment programs and 112 girls to attend secondary school.

Let’s meet some of the girls who have benefitted from our educational programs.

Aisha, Naishiye, Naanyu (back row)
and Jesca and Nyekonde (front) have dreams for their future

Aisha, Naanyu, Jesca, Nyekonde, and Naishiye have all completed primary school. In preparation for secondary school, which starts in January, the girls are among a group of 52 thirteen and fourteen year olds who are currently participating in TEMBO’s PASS program. This is an academic boost program which strengthens the girls’ English and academic skills. Many of them will be financially sponsored by TEMBO when they start secondary school.

We ask the girls what they like about the PASS program. Their eyes light up and they all want to speak at once. "We love the teachers, and the gardens and the food and the books and the library," Aisha whispers. “And there are no morans (young men) here.” We know what she is referring to: at this age, these girls are at extreme risk of being violated.

And what about the tests during PASS? Many of them agree that they are good to have. They tap their heads, “It makes us study.”

And what about your parents? Did any of your parents attend school? The girls tell us that three of their mothers attended primary school and one mom finished Form 4 in secondary school. One girl says that her mother had no schooling. None of their fathers attended school.

Why do you want to go secondary school? Nyekonde wants to get a good education and become a police officer. Naishiye wants to study Math and English and become a teacher. Aisha is setting her sights on becoming a nurse or a doctor.

Why is it important to educate girls? Jesca feels that education will allow her to “help my family.” Naanyu wants to get a good job and Aisha asserts that education will “help me in my future life and help me get skills for life.”

How do you think PASS is helping you prepare for secondary school?

Naishye is eager to say that “PASS helps me understand the subjects so that when I go to secondary school, I will understand." Both Jesca and Aisha say that it helps them understand and speak English. Nyekonde says that it helps her understand questions and answers.

All these girls are determined to succeed in secondary school and with the help of TEMBO’s educational enrichment programs, they are acquiring the necessary skills to fulfill their dreams.

We wish them every success!



During the month of November, secondary school students in Form 2 and Form 4 write national exams, a demanding experience for young adolescents.  This year, the Paolo family is ever hopeful that Sinyati and Peyai will do well on their exams. Mary Laiser, TEMBO’s Community Facilitator, can still recall the girls’ mother who came to TEMBO several times, looking for support. “She really wanted her girls to go to school, and the good thing is that her husband agreed. This is not always the case.”

 Sisters, Sinyati (left) and Peyai are studying hard for their national exams

Sinyati has worked hard over the past four years and she is hopeful she will pass. Sinyati reported, “I really needed the support last June. I have 4 more months before the exam. I have no place to study in my home, no lights, no books. It was good to come to TEMBO and have teachers help me with my studies.” Her younger sister, Peyai, is just two years behind her and is now writing her Form 2 exams. In 2015, she attended TEMBO’s Primary and Secondary SUCCESS (PASS) program and has always liked Math.

TEMBO is committed to providing the girls with educational support and encouragement throughout their entire secondary school journey. But it is their sheer determination and hard work that is truly inspiring. We wish every girl success in her exams.


I am beautiful.
I can hear birds with my ears
I can see the mountain with my eyes.
I am funny!
I can touch my skin. It feels cold.
I can taste a banana. It tastes sweet.
I am strong!
I feel happy because I am in PASS.
I have curly hair.
I am beautiful.

Nesakiti, PASS Student, 2017
November 28, 2017

Support TEMBO on Giving Tuesday and make a difference in the lives of girls and women in northern Tanzania.
Watch for news from TEMBO on Giving Tuesday!
Give an OPPORTUNITY GIFT to celebrate an anniversary, birthday, a special day or just recognize someone special with a donation to TEMBO Canada and send a card to acknowledge your gift.
and it just keeps getting better!
Highlights from this year’s event included:

- Greetings from Sophie Gregoire Trudeau.  She pledged her support for TEMBO’s work in changing the lives of girls and women in Tanzania.

- An engaging talk by Dr. Onita Basu. Dr. Basu’s passion and commitment to finding water solutions and working with the people of Longido was inspiring!

- An exciting update on the work of TEMBO in Longido.  We are sponsoring more girls than ever in secondary school, and they are staying in school longer and performing better.  We have an enhanced micro-finance loans program, and the programming at the Learning Centre just keeps growing to meet the demands of the community.

- A delicious lunch catered by Yasmin Syrian Cooks.  

- Wonderful items in the silent auction: travel vouchers, Sens tickets, art, jewellery and so much more.

-  And, of course, the African marketplace.  Something from Tanzania to please everyone.

Here is the really good news:  TEMBO’s 13th Annual Luncheon raised over $20,000. More than we have ever raised before at our annual luncheon.  
Now that will change lives!
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