We again say THANK YOU to all our donors for assisting us to finish the construction of the Bio-gas.
Peace Matunda is currently having a Biogas system built. Once completed, the waste from Peace Matunda’s cows will be processed into renewable gas, which is then fed through underground pipes back into the new school kitchen to power the cookers required to feed the students and staff. The work began just one month ago and look at the size of this hole already!
This Biogas system will help to eliminate our need for gas and firewood, which is both expensive and harmful to the environment. The cost of building this system is $4500 so in order to complete this construction and make it a success we need your help and support. Please help us make this happen, you can contact email@example.com to find out how to donate to this cause and get the Biogas at Peace Matunda up and running!
Thank you so much all our supporters for their donations in finishing the construction of the Water Tower, so now there is flow of water everywhere!!
For those of you who have visited Peace Matunda before will know that the water supply can often face shortages, therefore Peace Matunda is also having a water tower installed to ensure a constant supply of water to all the staff, orphans and vistors to Peace Matunda.
The first few months of 2012 at the base of Mount Meru have flown by! Peace Matunda Pre and Primary school is delighted to have a new baby class of 31 students bringing our total school population to 212. Thanks to a generous donation from Specific Media and the Cicely foundation in the UK we have been able to complete the construction of the classrooms for Standards 5,6, and 7 that started last year with help from the New International School of Thailand. The final construction has been progressing well with plans to be finished around the end of May, thank you Specific Media!
We have introduced a new lunch program for the school pupils. Lots of fundraising and hard work from previous volunteers has financed the start up costs of the program but we are still looking for sponsors to assist with the monthly support of the program. The children will have Makande (maize and beans) with vegetables everyday cooked by Mama Onesmo who has 2 children at Peace Matunda as well as two bananas each at break from Mama Monique.
We have hired several new teachers for the school, please see the Staff page for their information. The new Peace Matunda Library has also recently been finished. Each class will now have a supervised silent reading period in the library! Thank you to everyone who has donated books and to the NIST students for organizing the library.
We are currently doing the construction of classes five, six, and seven. These are the last classes in primary school. Class four is our oldest class this year , so we are happy that next year God willing our pupils are going to have new class five class ready for them.
We would like to sincerely thank the NIST school in Thailand, FPMT in Germany and the Cicely foundation in UK for the support that they have given us in the construction of the three classes.
We are very pleased to announce the opening of our new children’s home – Amani House. Please take a look at the photographs to see what has been done in the amazingly short time of August – December! No ‘pole pole’ attitude on this project!
We are very pleased with the end result as are the children. Lucy returns to the UK on Monday in completion of her role as Project Coordinator. She wishes everyone well and a big ASANTE SANA to everyone who helped with the Kilimanjaro climb that raised so much money for the building project (more than anyone expected!) and also all of the Square Roots donors – amazing achievement!
In total the Kilimanjaro climb raised over $85’000 and the Square Roots 2010 project over $15’000!! Thank you to everyone who helped us. It wouldn’t have been possible with you all.
Good news! The new Amani house is in its last stages of being finished. The name of the house was chosen by the orphanage kids ,where there were different names given out by the kids then they did the voting and lucky enough the Amani name won which means ‘PEACE HOUSE”. The furniture for the Amani house are being made locally. The kitchen shelves and cupboards are being made in Usa river not far from the orphanage. Other things for the kids beds like pillow cases are being made by a group in Arusha town called KNM mama association group. About the sofa for the playing room which we are still going around in Arusha town and other places hope we’re going to get the best which and the kids are going to like it!
October has been a very busy month. We started off by receiving 17 visitors from the UK through the Cicely Foundation who came to Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro mountain with Kaaya our Director, and Lucy our Project Coordinator. Altogether 19 of them climbed Kilimanjaro on the Mchame route over 6 days and raised over $60’000 US dollars for our new children’s home! A big ahsante sana to them all. To find out more about the climb why not read Lucy’s blog for the story: www.cicelypeacematunda.blogspot.com
Picture of Cicely group at the end of the climb
Sadly we had to say goodbye to Melanie from the USA who volunteered with us from 3rd September to the 13th October. Melanie was a great help and provided the kids with a lot of fun times. We also received volunteers from Cananda and the USA; Kayleigh Hortop who is with us for her university internship in Canada (Carelton University), Jenna Peltier and Ashton Thomas from Canada, Maura McGrath from the USA. They have all been doing fantastic work within the school supporting after school tuition sessions and play activities.
It was Alex Forgeth’s 10th birthday in October and we celebrated with a chocolate cake and tuna pasta! The cake went down very well but maybe not the tuna pasta…. not very African.
The weather here has been very hot but we have a short ‘rainy season’ starting from around October – November. This means that the roads will be a mud slide once again!
We received further generous donations including one from Kitty Oldfield in the UK who donated her sixth birthday money and Barclay’s Bank in Arusha who visited us and donated many food items for the orphanage such as maize, beans and rice. Tamu!
Dorice was staying up at the house in October along with Corfield, Joyce and Kaaya’s eldest son and Lovine who will be permanently staying with us at the orphanage. Lovine is from Arusha and arrived in September to Meru.
The new children’s home is developing very fast and we hope to find 3 more beds become available for children in desperate need of accommodation within the area. We will let you know who these will be nearer to the time! The completion month is December and we hope to have all the children move in before Christmas day. The fundis ‘workmen’ are doing an excellent job. All work is sourced within the local region; the construction by a Tengeru contractor, the furniture by an excellent woodcraft company based in USA River and the soft furnishings from a ‘mama’s group’ in Arusha.
Right. That’s it for now. If you need any further information please ask and we will send you our monthly newsletter for October. We are hoping to make this available to you all via our website soon. Please keep looking for future updates!
It’s been a very long time you may have noticed since our last news update! This is partly because we lost the invaluable help of Lori and Johanna who worked tirelessly on the website for us amongst everything else. Thank you ladies! We wish you the best of luck in your new ventures.
So, to update you on recent events and what’s to come…we have a new International Project Coordinator with us called Lucy Devall who has been funded by The Cicely Foundation to work with us here in Tanzania until October. She will be managing the international volunteer programme as well as coordinating communication for us on the website and for fundraising. If you want to get in touch with her then contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org
We have updated our ‘Children’s’ page of the website where you can now see all of our residential children. We are also waiting on the inclusion of 20 more children who need sponsorship to add to this site. They are currently on the waiting list for accommodation at Peace Matunda but we do not have the facilities to look after them as yet. Keep an eye out for these children and if you’re ready to sponsor a child then please do get in touch…
Our new toilet block is under construction, which will make way for a new playground for the children. This is being funded through the kind donations and grants made possible by The Cicely Foundation.
We are looking for volunteers this year to fill spaces from July onwards. If you or anyone you know is interested then please do get in touch.
We have also begun registration with the Government of Tanzania to officially gain ‘School’ status. This is a massive step for us and for the future of the children here at Peace Matunda. There is a long road to travel but we hope that by 2011 we will have completed this so wish us luck!
May was a busy month! We have four more volunteers living with us right now: Jennilea and her sister Kayleigh, Anneke and Andy. Jennilea and Kayleigh are from Canada, Anneke is a friend of Anna’s from Holland. She will be staying five weeks, Jennilea and Kayleigh are staying four weeks. Andy Rosenhek, our first volunteer at Peace Matunda, has come back for the month of May. He is also from Canada, he returned this month to visit with the kids. We are very happy to see him again. Andy did fundraising back home and brought a generous donation to help fund the construction of the new building. He also brought over medicine and supplies for local health clinics. We really appreciate his work with future projects with the Cicely Foundation and Rotary Club. All of his hard work and dedication has been extremely helpful in keeping our School and Orphanage improving at a very fast pace. Thank you so much to all of the volunteers, you are doing an amazing job.
Good news: our new orphanage is just finished! We are so happy. Ten new kids moved in two weeks ago, so there are now twenty one all together! The youngest; Happyness, Leah, Dickson, Dorkas, Gladness, and Merry came from a village forty kms away called Makiba. They are between three and five years and in the baby class at school. Aside from Dickson all the kids still have both parents but they are unable to support them so they were very thankful to have them come to Peace Matunda. Farajeal, eleven, and Addita, five, are from Ngarenanyuki. Farajeal is in the Standard 1 class and Addita is the baby class. Godson is six years old and in the new Kindergarten class. Agape is five and in the baby class. The new children are getting more and more settled in their new home. Thanks to all mosquito nets left by previous volunteers, every child sleeps under a net. The new children have been very good adapting to living at Peace Matunda. This transition for them has been made much easier thanks to the older children taking care of them; especially Emma, Doris and Jesca.
The fourth classroom at the Peace Matunda School was also finished this month! The sixty kids in baby class were split into two sections, one baby class and one Kindergarten. The baby class is back in the oldest classroom and is rapidly growing. Including the eight children from the orphanage there are thirteen new kids in the baby class. Teacher Magdalena has been teaching the baby class with volunteer Sarah’s help. There is a new teacher for the Kindergartens starting in June. We have been able to hire a new teacher, William Mafie for the Standard Two classroom; Martha is going to teach Standard One. This will be a great help for the school as now all the classrooms will have a Kiswahili teacher. The children are still making great progress in their reading and writing and math skills.
Volunteers Jennilea, Sarah and Anna took Dorris, Emma, Jesca, and Alex to Arusha National Parks late this month. The children enjoyed the opportunity to see different animals like Zebras, Giraffes, Monkeys and various types of Birds. Seeing these wild animals was definitely an exciting and educational experience.
It has been two weeks since Madeleine returned home to the United States. Madeleine did an amazing job at Peace Matunda. Over the six months that she was here, she helped out Peace Matunda in several ways. She painted our old classroom, and helped out many families in the community. Before she left we had a pool party with kids! She brought all of the kids and adults to have lunch at Masai café, we had pizza, and then we went to Ngurudoto Lodge for swimming and playing at the playground. The kids really enjoyed the lunch, it was so good. The kids also loved the pool, the young ones played in the kiddy pool but with the volunteers help some of the older children were able to swim really well in the big pool. We had so much fun! As a final farewell the Warriors of the East came all the way to Peace Matunda to play for us. Thank you Madeleine, we miss you and think of you often.
The last week of May has been very busy! A group of eight people from The Cicely Foundation from the United Kingdom have arrived to stay for about a week. They came to visit and to see how things are going. They were very kind to bring many new supplies and toys for both the orphanage and the school. The children have really been enjoying the chalk boards, hats, balls, games, books, and everything else! Their donations for the new building along with their advice and guidance are also much appreciated! Thank you so much!
Another child moved to the main house this month. Next in the rotation of the orphanage kids was Jesca. She was a great helper. She was helping many things like cleaning, doing the dishes, setting the table, holding a little baby Stephen and other things. Thank you Jesca!
New kids Godson Farajeal, Addita and Agape
The next step in our plans at Peace Matunda is to start the foundation for a new building. This building will start with a base of 4 rooms: two classrooms, a dinning hall and study area for the kids. We have received some help from our volunteers Kayleigh, Sarah and Jennilea who held a fundraiser back home and were able to purchase stones, gravel, and dirt to begin part of the foundation. The idea to make three stories is due to the small plot of land we have and in order to preserve some of the land so that the children have space to play. We will continue to keep everyone updated on the progress of this new project!
As usual, this month has gone by really fast. The children and our matrons are doing well. Our new child, Shiela, has been very good at adapting to living at Peace Matunda. She is getting more and more settled into her new home. Three volunteers who came in March – Susan, Nancy, and Carly – left this month. They did a really nice job at Peace Matunda. We appreciate their big help. The kids had a lot of fun with them. Carly, Oliver, Johanna and Madeleine had a birthday this month so they celebrated with the kids. We had chocolate cake and birthday crowns at each party!
We had a new volunteer named Sarah arrive from Canada. She is staying for six weeks and she is doing a nice job. The kids love her so much. She is teaching in the baby class together with Anna. She and Anna are really doing an amazing job. It is so nice to have two volunteers in one class because the baby class has more than forty five kids.
More good news …We are about to finish our new building. Madeleine and the builders are helping to paint. Madeleine is so cool! She is doing an amazing job. We are very lucky to have Madeleine here. In the past, Madeleine took two kids into town to have fun. Oliver is resuming this tradition. Oliver took Magreth and Emma to town to eat lunch and play on the computer. We are really thankful. Anna, who has been here for 3 months now, recently accomplished the biggest feat in all of Africa: she climbed Mt Kilimanjaro with Bella, Kaaya’s cousin. Good job Anna!
We also received donations from Madeleine’s mom and two of Madeleine’s friends in Nashville, TN. Madeleine’s mom donated underwear for all of our kids and even our neighbors’ children. We really needed more underwear here! The kids were thrilled. The Krauss family from Nashville donated pillowcases, small hand-knitted towels and a book for the kids. The handmade book and each pillowcase were donated from the children in Glendale Elementary Kindergarten class. Thank you so much for your big support. Our children can now use the new pillows that Madeleine donated (20 pillows!). Before, the kids had no pillows on their beds. Susan gave each of our kids “I LOVE NY” T-shirts from the big city in the United States. Susan used to live there. The kids will always remember Susan when they wear them. Also, Carly and Nancy gave each of the children blue jean skirts (girls only) and athletic shorts for the boys. Team Waki donated mattresses for all the new kids who will be joining us. The new room is almost complete. Thank you for all of your donations!
This month, Livingstone moved here. He was very happy to move to the main house. He is very good in class and he is also a good helper. He helped set the table, clean the table, and pick up the trash. He is so nice. He is also good friends with Corfield.
This month we had a new Matron named Tumani. Dorris is no longer working for us. Instead, we have hired Tumaini. She came from a small town nearby and she has a lot of working experience from another orphanage known as Nkwaranga Orphanage Centre. Doris went back to her family in order to take care of her three kids.
Arriving in Africa is an interesting experience. Riding the daladala for the first time is an exhilarating and truly horrifying experience. Walking into the playground at Peace Matunda, however, is a heart-breaking and awe-inspiring situation… cathartic. When I arrived, I knew it was an orphanage, and my mind was prepared. But my heart wasn’t. The children surrounded us, touching our clothes, jewelery, skin, hair. From the get go, I saw all smiles, heard their laughter and felt their hugs. I realized that you cannot help but to love these children for their basic joy and acceptance of all.
Even though was a short stay, I was privileged enough to be able to teach the kindergarten class with another volunteer. English, Math, exercises, activities (painting, drawing, puzzles, books) and Kiswahili are taught and my class had 15 wonderful students. Never having taught before, I looked to the children to teach me what they needed. Strengths and weaknesses showed after the first or second class and teaching then took on a fluidity and ease that I never thought would happen.
Post-school playtime was some of my favorite moments spent here. “TRYING” to make animal shapes out of balloons, swimming in the river and drawing pictures on the porch was the perfect mix for belly shaking laughs and happy memories, especially with the 10-15 devilish little angels that accompanied such activities.
As for the rest of the stay, the locals are great. There is always a greeting as someone walks by, and there is no end to the people that are genuinely interested in who you are and where you are from. I am thankful that Richard has an ample supply of pipi for the kids, that Bella is such an open and friendly waterfall guide, and Kaaya and Joyce are welcoming and wonderful hosts. Tawny, Madeleine and Johanna – I am happy to have gotten to know each and everyone of you, and appreciate all of the guidance.
To all the children of Peace Matunda, as well as my new friends, I will miss you all very much.
– Bryce is originally from Connecticut, U.S.. He volunteered at Peace Matunda for two weeks in January 2009 together with his brother Ben.