Adolescent girls in Longido District, Tanzania live in the precarious balance between marriage and education. Living in traditional Maasai homes far from the main village, young girls are isolated and cut off from essential academic support programs that foster success in secondary school.
In 2010, TEMBO recognized that if adolescent girls were to have any real chance of finishing secondary school, they needed more than school fees and a uniform. For eight years we have been delivering academic support programs as the girls transition from primary school to secondary school and during their long school break. The results have been remarkable. The students supported by TEMBO are now staying in school longer, performing better, and achieving results that allow them to go on in school or to get jobs and contribute to the support of their families. They have all of the advantages of an education.
TEMBO’s ability to deliver academic support depends on a combination of factors including access to qualified teachers, an adequate teaching environment and safe and secure accommodation for the girls while studying. In 2018, TEMBO reached a critical moment in the delivery of our academic programs as there were no longer any acceptable accommodation options in the village. To live true to our vision – educating for equal opportunities in northern Tanzania – the time had come for us to build our own girls’ hostel that would provide a bright, secure, positive living environment for the girls as they strive to achieve their academic dreams.
In September 2018, we broke ground. Soon, we had walls, a floor and a roof. In January we installed the water tanks, and by February 2019 the building was complete and the contractor handed over the keys to the Board of TEMBO Trust.
In June 2019, 72 girls will sleep in the hostel and the official opening will take place on the International Day of the African Child.