Some of our wonderful students
I hope that everything is good in your world.
I wanted to write with the final update of 2019, which has been a terrible, frustrating and inspiring year.
Terible because of the tragic Easter Sunday Bombings that took so many lives and saw the political leaders of the country, across the board, run for cover and protect themselves rather than lead and look after their people.
Frustrating, because in order to have a better chance in the elections (just finished), the politicians kept the country on an unnecessary high alert in order to garner votes. This meant that government schools were not able to open their doors to external providers like Tea Leaf Trust and so children across the country lost wonderful opportunities... and this project had to be delivered in a different way.
Inspiring, because at Tea Leaf Trust we have 29 staff who are all under the age of 30. 27 of them are graduates of our programme. In the last year they have faced and dealt with political upheaval, terrorist attacks and the resulting communal violence and tensions. They have worked harder, complained less and shown maturity lacking in their country's leadership. It has been incredible to watch.
So, to the Community English Programme. Despite being 'hamstrung' by not being able to run the classes in schools, we achieved the following things:
- We trained 250 of our Main Diploma students in how to teach Basic English to children, skills that many have put into practice in their own communities
- We circumvented the issue by running two full days of children's activities in 14 different locations engaging 2,091 children. These sessions taught some Basic English, but also shared information about health and nutrition in areas where the malnutrition rates in children are extremely high. 97% of the children reported back that they had increased their knowledge about this subject AND had a good time!
- We used the additional time available for the students to write and prepare street dramas around the subject of peace and reconciliation. They then performed these street dramas at 15 locations for 1,430 people
- 155 students have also carried out Individual Service Projects, designed and delivered over a 6 week period to help their communities and those in them who are the worst off. During the project, students volunteered 4,287.5 hours of their own time and helped 35,247 community members by replacing pipes and fixing water tanks, fixing windows, repairing bus shelters, teaching children English. The staggering figure is that 83% of students continued their projects after the deadline to continuing helping their communities
It has been a tough year, no doubt, but the project has helped over 2,500 children and young people as well as over 50,000 community members.
Thank you for your invaluable support. We are hugely grateful and really couldn't have done this without you.
With best wishes,
Tim, Yas and all of us at Tea Leaf Trust
An old favourite - thank you!