A new dormitory, and further extensions of the Rescue Center
In the previous three months, a very important focus of our work was the extension of the Tareto Maa Rescue Center. As we only had a temporary building so far, we started to build a new and permanent dormitory. To these construction works, the funds which we raised in the Winter Challenge on GlobalGiving made a substantial contribution. In addition to that, we asked for support in our local community. And we received a huge amount of support!
Members of the local community donated 70 bags of cement, 66 iron sheets, 5,000 bricks, and lots of timber. During April, the new dormitory was nearly completed. Only the windows, the doors, and the plaster are still lacking. We hope that the girls can move in soon. The old (temporary) building will be used as a “dining hall” and storage room henceforward.
A second solar module which has been donated by a German solar company, has been installed in March, and we use it to operate a radio. The girls are very happy that they can listen to the news now, and they feel more connected with other people in Kenya, Africa, and other parts of the world.
We built a pipe between the river and the rescue center. With the help of a mobile generator, we can pump up water now that can be used for washing and gardening. Unfortunately there is no good news as regards our water well (which we wanted to use for drinking water). It had collapsed in the beginning of the rainy season. As an engineer explained to us now, the soil of the rescue center is too wet for a normal digging. So it would collapse again, if we tried to rebuild it. We are looking for an alternative solution.
The Kenyan public health authorities made a regular inspection of the rescue center about six weeks ago. In general they supported our work very much. There was only one appeal: that the number of toilets and washing rooms is not enough for 95 children. Thus we had to build additional facilities (which we did in the meantime).
Naitawang Riverside Academy
The new primary school which we opened in January 2012 (in close collaboration with the local community) has been approved by the national school authorities in Nairobi now. After one year of operation (i.e. in January 2013), we will be allowed to apply for government funds to expand the school. To build another classroom within 2012, we want to organize a Harambe in June. “Harambe” is the Swahili word for a public fundraising event. With this event we want to ask the local community to support the extension of the school.
Annual Report and a new project video published
At the end of the first quarter, we published our Annual Report 2011 which reports on the project development in 2011, and on the basic financial data of Tareto Maa. You find the Annual Report here: http://bit.ly/Hr5tXT
We also published a new video on our YouTube channel. The video is called “Life in the Tareto Maa Rescue Center”. This is the link: www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGkM378lLGs.
The number of girls in the Rescue Center is still 95. At the moment, all of the girls are healthy and doing fine. We want to thank all our donors for the great support they give to us and to the girls in the Tareto Maa Rescue Center.
November/December: The “circumcision season” In the previous weeks, 25 more children came to Tareto Maa and asked for shelter. In 2010, the number of “new girls” during the circumcision season had been 43. This decrease shows that the campaigning of Tareto Maa was very successful in 2011.Traditionally, the circumcision of girls takes place in the last weeks of a year. During this period in November/December 2010, a lot more children took refuge at Tareto Maa than we anticipated. Back then, within 6 weeks, the number of girls in the rescue center jumped up from 27 to 70. So we had to nourish and send to school a total of 70 children in 2011. But at the same time, Tareto Maa’s impact in the local community increased as well. Many neighbours and representatives of the local community started to support our relief project.The members of the Tareto Maa Group, and particularly the pastor, who holds frequent conversations within the community, observed that many people began to rethink their opinions. That this observation was correct became evident in this year’s “circumcision season”. Many families refused to practice female mutilation. Accordingly, the number of girls who had to run for shelter declined considerably.As 25 “new girls” arrived in the rescue center in the previous weeks, the total number of girls in the center is 95 now.
A new school: in close cooperation with the communitySome months ago, Tareto Maa proposed building a new school together with the local community. The idea was to strengthen the education in Kilgoris and to save money for Tareto Maa. Instead of sending the girls who live in the rescue center to public schools, which are quite far away and involve fees, the private school offers a better and “free” education to the Tareto Maa girls, with tuition being charged for the other children sent there by their families. Funds for the new school were raised with public events in Transmara (fundraising events which are called “Harambee” in Kenya). In addition to that, donors from the US and Europe supported the project. With a budget of US $ 14,000 the first two classrooms were built in November and December 2011. The construction works, as well as the registration of the new school were finished in time. With a public celebration the school opened on January 9, 2012. The name of the new school is Naitawang Riverside Acadamy. The word “Naitawang“ comes from the Maasai language and means “light of our community“. The school is seated within the area of the Tareto Maa center.
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