I was the lucky one to escape from all the hype of the Kenyan elections with a bunch of Vonluteers just over the border to Tanga-Tanzani. See their story….
Jambo Jambo from Camp Tanga in Tanzania. What a crazy couple of weeks it’s been. We’ve invaded here to avoid the Kenyan presidential elections, so Camp Tanga has gone from three to forty two people. It was quite a remarkable change for Joe, Maria and Alice but they welcomed us with open arms and we are like one big family.
The plastering in the Tanga trust house has temporarily been stopped and we have been involved in various projects.
On the first three days we helped the Mama’s in the village seaweed farm. We were unsure what to expect.However, I was pleasantly surprised. We had to walk out to sea in the morning and tie seaweed to string. Team A beat the record of completing 40 lines in total in two hours. In the afternoon we went to the Mama’s houses and bagged up the dried out seaweed and prepared the lines ready for the next day. When the seaweed is dried it weighed considerably less. The Mama’s only get paid approximately 7p per Kg.In England this is the equivalent to one text message! On average one lady can do 6 lines in a morning, with our help we managed 119 between 4 groups in one morning, this was a massive help to the community and as you can imagine over three days we accumulated over a month’s income for the Mama’s.
The village livestock has a serious problem with worms which causes the animals to become malnourished and weak. They should be De-wormed quarterly but medicine is too expensive for this to happen. We pioneered a new initiative in Tanga where Camps De-worm the entire village’s livestock every 3 months. We started with cows, some of them didn’t want to co-operate and made it difficult for us to give them medicine! The men showed them who was boss and would not back down, we were victorious.
Next were goats! Unlike the cows the goats were roaming around the village. We had to run around the village catching them bringing them back to give them their medicine. David ‘the goat whisperer’ was on fire, carrying the goats back one by one.Then there was Luke, I’m sure I saw him on his back more than I saw him on his feet.
In the afternoon it was the chicken’s turn to be treated. They were pretty much the same as the goats, just flappier! There were a couple of casualties mainly caused by goats. David took a hoof to the shin and Will got bitten. Whereas Shauni was silly and got blistered from the sun but still managed to work as she has incredible self motivation!
We went back to the Trust house but this time we weren’t plastering but leveled and created a playground for the children. This involved the boys setting out on excavating an epic tree root which was great to release all your anger. Meanwhile, whilst the boys were dripping with sweat and working hard, the girls taught the locals, helping them with reading and writing English.
Once all the roots were dug up, the next step was starting to build a fence surrounding the Trust house in order to keep the animals out of the playground. We started to dig holes 6ft apart and 2ft deep, this was very muddy work. We spent 3 days building the fence, even though we had depleted numbers as some were having a great time in Zanzibar and 15 people had travelled back home. Not to worry too much, there are new recruits in camp, in the form of 7 new English gappers.
However it hasn’t been all work and no play! On the first weekend we arrived in Tanzania we went to the local night club. It’s safe to say a few too many tequilas were consumed! Ali P woke up on Sammy’s bus as she fell asleep on the way home and nobody thought to wake her up! We have visited the Tanga International Conference Center (TICC) and enjoyed a swim in the sea, We went to a local hotel for a cool down in the pool and jumped off the pontoon at The Yacht Club. This was all very lovely and then BAM the storm hit!! I got up at half 2 in the morning on Saturday night to check out what the commotion was outside, it turns out the small dome tents were flooding and people were rescuing their stuff. The Dutchees were sat in two inches of water with their little light not knowing what to do. We went around all of the tents and tried to put everyone’s stuff into a dry place. By three o’clock the rescue was finished and we were all laughing hysterically about the whole situation. Sunday was operation clean up we re-waterproofed the tents and dried out our stuff. Everyone pulled together to help each other and by Sunday evening everybody had somewhere dry to sleep.
We are heading back to Kenya tomorrow. We are going to miss the incredible view, the projects and all of the people we are leaving behind. However, we will be celebrating two birthdays, Shauni’s and Kate’s!
We hope you enjoyed reading what we’ve been up to.
Harlie, Will, Shauni ,Abbie, Lauren, Holly, David and Annabella xoxoxo J