AfricAid staff undertake regular site visits to Losinoni Primary School, where we administer a school lunch program, as well as receiving written project reports from the school administration. AfricAid has been supporting Losinoni since 2004 and has implemented a number of successful initiatives at this rural primary school, which serves local Maasai communities. We’re delighted to be able to share some of the highlights of the latest report from the school with our Global Giving supporters.
Losinoni currently has 557 students enrolled. A new primary school opened in the area a short time ago, and is closer to the homes of some of the students, who have since transferred there.
Since the introduction of the school lunch program at Losinoni, the Principal reports that school attendance has increased, student concentration levels have increased, and there is more active classroom participation. This has meant that student performance in the national Standard Seven Examinations (the last year of Primary School) has continued to rise. In 2004, when AfricAid commenced working with Losinoni, only 23% of Losinoni students passed the exam; in 2014 this number was 87%! We’re absolutely delighted with this result, and look forward to it growing further. By way of comparison, the national pass rate for 2014 was 57%.
All of this is made possible because of support from people like you! We’re extremely grateful for the support we receive from our generous Global Giving donors.
Thanks to the School Lunch Program, there is even enough energy for a game of netball at lunchtime!
Losinoni village is part of the East African Rift fluoride belt. While a small amount of fluoride is associated with the prevention of tooth decay, many parts of Tanzania and East Africa have toxic levels. The World Health Organization recommends that we ingest no more than 1.5mg/liter of fluoride in the water we use for drinking and cooking. Unfortunately in some parts of Northern Tanzania, the fluoride level reaches 95mg/liter.
Students at Losinoni Primary School benefit immensely from the generous donors who contribute to their school lunch program through AfricAid. In addition to the nutritious lunch they receive daily, the teachers and administrators ensure that the lunch is a healthy break from the often dangerous levels of fluoride occurring naturally in their home water supplies. Levels above 10 mg/liter are associated with the bone disease skeletal fluorosis, which causes pain and damage to bones and joints and can have a severe crippling effect.
By collecting rainwater from the roofs of all the school buildings, the school is able to provide safe drinking water and to cook the daily lunch of traditional makande stew in uncontaminated, fluoride free water.
We’d like to thank our Global Giving donors for supporting the school lunch project at Losinoni Primary School. As a result of your support, we feel confident these students have a brighter future ahead of them.
Losinoni village is in Northern Tanzania. The people who live in and around Losinoni are primarily Maasai, and they face incredibly harsh conditions in that area. Each day, around 600 children make their way to Losinoni Primary School, and despite the difficult terrain, lack of safe drinking water, and ongoing threats to their family’s food supply, these children learn and thrive. In 2014, it was ranked the #1 primary school in the district.
AfricAid believes there are three main reasons for Losinoni’s success:
Through the AfricAid School Lunch Program, the children of Losinoni Primary School have enough fuel to sustain them in their studies. They eat makande, a traditional Tanzanian dish of stewed beans and corn. The dish is especially popular among the Pare and Chagga people of the Kilimanjaro Region of Northern Tanzania, but the dish is eaten throughout the country, especially by school children. The reason is simple: makande provides a nutritious, “whole protein” meal at a relatively low cost. Swahili Mom Kitchen offers a great recipe for makande – why no try it yourself? There’s a link to the recipe below.
With the support of our donors, AfricAid will continue to ensure that the children of Losinoni are able to thrive. We’d like to again say a big thank you to you for donating to the School Lunch Program through Global Giving.
AfricAid's Losinoni School Lunch Program began years ago when AfricAid founders went to visit the rural primary school in Tanzania. Arriving during what would normally be lunch time, the founders noticed that the children do not receive a meal at school. When creating the School Lunch Program, the mothers of the children wanted to help. The Maasai people are known for their beautiful beaded jewelry that they make by hand and the Shuylers thought this would be a great opportunity for the Losinini mamas to help feed their children at school. AfricAid buys the handmade jewelry from the mothers and re-sells the bracelets and key chains in the US to fund the School Lunch Program. These amazing mothers put time and energy into ensuring their children and others in the village are receiving a nutricious meal at school so they can stay focused and study.
Thank you for supporting this community initiated program.
In 2010, AfricAid began a school lunch program for students attending a rural Tanzanian primary school, Losinoni. The children walk several miles a day to attend Losinoni Primary School where they find a daily hot lunch waiting for them through the AfricAid sponsored Losinoni lunch program. Sometimes this is the only nutritious meal they get that day. As you know, a hungry tummy can be very distracting and can cause a child to fall behind in class.
In 2013, AfricAid served 125,000 lunches to 559 students. Lunches consist of cooked maize and beans to keep children’s stomachs full so they can focus while in class. In 2004, only 23% of children from Losinoni moved on to secondary school. This percentage has increased to 85% in 2012 with the help of AfricAid’s lunch program.
The AfricAid Losinoni lunch program is supported in part by the jewelry the children’s mothers make that AfricAid sells in the US.
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