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2022 in review: The House of Talents grows

Updated: Feb 18, 2023

A lot has happened at Talents of Tanzania in the past year that we want to share with you.


After our first call for donations at the end of 2021, we received the first donations at the beginning of last year. Since February 2022, the project can be financed with donations, which has been a huge success for us. Many thanks to all who have contributed a part!


ACROBATICS AND MORE

At the beginning of 2022, we were very lucky to recruit a new teacher: Rashid, he has many years of experience as an acrobatics teacher for children and teenagers and is appreciated very much by the children in our project. His has great talent for preparing the children and teenagers for performances.


Thanks to the donations as well as the efforts of our team in Chanika, we have been able to decorate the wall that surrounds our training area. We have also built a canopy so that we can train in the shade during the day. Equipment such as unicycles, costumes, and a climbing pole have also allowed us to bring more variety to our training.


In addition to acrobatic training, we have also practiced improvised theater as well as dance numbers, which the children greatly enjoy. We are happy every day to see the creativity that blossoms in the House of Talents.



EXCHANGE WITH SWITZERLAND

At the beginning of the year, we had a guest from Switzerland with us: a high school student who wanted to write her Matura thesis about the project. We benefited greatly from her perspective and dedication.


In spring, the founders Godlisten and Astrid traveled together to Switzerland for teaching and learning. Godlisten had the opportunity to offer workshops at circus schools for children and young people, e.g. on topics like stable pyramids. The experience allowed him to pass on his knowledge while learning new new things for the project in Tanzania.


Some of this has already been established in the project, like new ways of designing a workshop or a lesson. Together, Godlisten and Astrid also developed a show that they performed in different places. It was a very enriching experience.



SCHOOL

The school has also been able to grow: we are now teaching math, languages and drawing in the mornings. The teachers try to contribute to the learning of social skills of the children and adolescents through lessons that are as varied and engaging as possible.


Jackson has been vital in this effort. A social worker and teacher, her supports us in the lessons and in the cooperation with the parents. Jackson also educates the children about their rights. His focus is on the sustainable transfer of knowledge so that children and young people can experience educational moments instead of just learning to forget again. His goal is to prepare the children and young people for a self-sufficient and independent life. Four evenings a week, Jackson also teaches English to our acrobatic coaches and older youth.


A few weeks ago, Jackson went to visit eight families at home whose children regularly participate in the project, in order to involve the families in our project as well.


In the new year we are trying to involve more teachers from the area in our project.


FOUNTAIN AND GARDEN

The former draw well is now electrically operated by a pump so that the water can be obtained hygienically through a tap. Our well is accessible free of charge to all people, even outside the Talents of Tanzania project.

In our village, Chanika Kipepeo in Tanzania, wells are usually only accessible against payment, which is why many people affected by poverty drink water from the rivers. We want to counteract this and give all people access to clean drinking water from a well.


The school garden was first planted in June 2022. Sustainable and ecological cultivation and the topic of reforestation are vital topics for us, and we actively advocate and thus sensitize the children and young people to the relevance of this topic through the joint implementation of our school garden. Everything we had planted in the summer could be harvested and eaten together. In November, we were able to begin the second cycle and sow again.


A BIG THANK YOU TO ALL DONORS

Thanks to the donations collected in 2022 we are able to pay salaries to the teachers in the project, who joined us as volunteers at the beginning. In addition, we were able to buy a cabinet, mats and material for building blackboards for the school. We were able to expand the acrobatics equipment and also build a shed for the training material and a partial roofing of the training area for acrobatics. The toilet now has a door where before there was only a curtain. The renovation of the fountain could also be financed by donations. Furthermore, and most importantly, we are able to finance the daily life, such as food for a balanced diet for everyone involved in the project, including our cat. Thank you very much for making this possible!


We are very grateful for two very generous donations: on the one hand from ECO SOLIDAR, an association that promotes humanity by supporting small local projects in Africa, among other places, and whose focus is on helping people to help themselves; and on the other hand from the Catholic parish of St.Gallus (Pfarrei St.Gallus.).


Also a very special thank you goes to Susan from Yoga am Fluss Zürich. She organized a yoga benefit event for us, through which we received a total donation of CHF 1400. Thank you Susan and thank you to all participants who made this possible for us! Finally, we would like to express our sincere thanks to: Vera Studach, Antoinette Villain, Trix and Lukas Gerig, Josef and Annemarie Meyer, Anna Mühlemann, Regula and Fabian Heinzer. Thank you for your donations of at least CHF 500 each. Thanks to you our project could to bloom!



OUTLOOK 2023

The goal this year is to integrate dance and theater in the Talents of Tanzania program more actively. By combining elements of acrobatics with theater and dance, the children are offered a wider range of expressive and performative possibilities. For this purpose we are currently looking for a suitable teacher, preferably a woman, in order to facilitate the access of girls to the project, as they have a direct role model.


We also aim to be more active in including the village and thus the kids' social network in the interest of fostering the project's sustainable development in the local community. Very recently, the mother of Rita, a girl who regularly participates in the project, has agreed to participate in the project as a supporting teacher. We are very happy about this development!


In the coming summer, Astrid will do further training in Switzerland on the subject of horticulture in order to be able to apply and pass on her knowledge in Tanzania.

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