Besides continually providing funds for badly needed medical supplies and equipment, over the years we have been involved with many successful health initiatives in Nyaishozi. Here are our most recent projects:
Feminine Hygiene Project - Phase 2
The longer lasting Days for Girls feminine hygiene kits with washable liners are loved by the female students in Nyaishozi. Since the initial project in 2015, we have provided four secondary schools with kits for their students. Each school has participated in the Days for Girls programme, whereby the girls were taught how to care for their kits and were given a short course in Human Biology. This explained puberty and adolescence, as well as basic personal hygiene and welfare. Rugu Secondary School became the third school to participate in the spring of 2019, during a UK trustee visit to the area.
Feminine Hygiene Project - Phase 1
This project was run by the Ugandan chapter of the Days for Girls Charity. Days for Girls, an international organisation, provides long lasting feminine hygiene products for girls and women who either cannot access disposable products because they live in remote areas, or because they are too expensive. Detachable knicker linings can be washed and if cared for properly, last for several years. Kits were brought to Nyaishozi and the Ugandan DfG team visited two secondary schools and held an outdoor teaching session for the women in the village.
The local students and Nyaishozi women were taught how to make the kits and how to look after them. Each participant left with a Days for Girls kit as well as the female students having a lesson on Human Biology – dispelling some of the Tanzanian myths about sex and menstruation.
Solar Panelling Light for Schools
As part of this ongoing project, we have provided the funds for Ruhinda and Rugu Secondary Schools to install enough solar panelling to power the lighting for two classrooms. This enables students to continue with their learning after dark and to study in a protected environment.
Desks for Sponsored Students
Although a government directive now dictates that there will no longer be a registration fee for children to attend school, students still have to pay for their own desks and chairs at secondary school entry level. Our ‘Basic Allowance’ covers uniform, stationery, soap and shoes, but it does not allow for school furniture. We therefore funded the purchase of desks and chairs for our sponsored Ruhinda Secondary School students.
Mobilising Health Workers at remote dispensaries
When Father Vitalis visited the UK in 2018, he brought news of remote dispensaries struggling to access isolated patients in rural areas. He made an appeal at St. Michael’s Church Ashtead and funds were raised for a Chinese motorbike to be donated to Kahanga Dispensary. Two parishioners came forward to donate the monies for another two bikes which were donated to Kibogoizi and Rugu Dispensaries.
Providing Maize School Lunches
Nyaishozi Primary School is the main feeder school for the surrounding secondary schools. It educates over 1,000 children, many of whom are from the poorest of families. Homes are scattered over a wide area and children as young as 5 years old can walk several hours a day to and from school, often on an empty stomach. With that in mind, we introduced a Maize for School Lunches programme, whereby school land was turned over to growing maize. This in turn was ground to provide a filling and nutritious elevenses for 100 of the poorest pupils.
Special Education Support Grant
Action in Africa have also made a few small special support grants to poor students whose academic achievements had earned them offers to further their education at universities, but initial help was needed to enable them to take up their places.
One such student was Rebecca Didas. She is now a qualified midwife and graduated with a Masters degree in Midwifery. We funded 50% of her college fees. Rebecca works at the local dispensary and is a trustee of the Action in Africa Nyaishozi committee.
The Patilisis have been part of the Action in Africa family since 2015, when we began sponsoring Bibiana’s education at Nyaishozi Secondary School. As the family were living in desperate circumstances, we contributed to costs of the construction of a house, so that they may be protected from the elements. The house is in a very remote location, therefore, we have since added guttering to the property and installed a rain water harvest tank. The family will no longer have to walk several miles to the nearest well.
Medical Supplies & Equipment for Nyaishozi Dispensaries
A haemoglobin machine was hand carried to Nyaishozi Dispensary during a recent trustee visit. As pregnant women are particularly prone to anaemia in Nyaishozi, the haemoglobin machine will detect early signs of this illness and help to save lives.
Ruhinda Secondary School Female Student Dormitory & Ablution Block
As the Nyaishozi community is spread over a vast area, many inhabitants live in remote areas. The journey to school is over difficult terrain and may take several hours. Girls are particularly at risk walking back and fore to school. Staying locally in lodgings is also a concern, with stories of sexual abuse and general mistreatment. As a result, Action in Africa funded the construction of a dormitory and shower block at Ruhinda Secondary School to house 48 of its female students. The Erach Roshan Sadri Foundation and Hilden Charitable Trust helped to fund the build whilst the local community provided the bricks and the labour.
Sponsor a desk Programme for our Supported Pupils
The Tanzanian government had a drive to ensure that all children of school age receive a free education. One of the negative effects of this very positive news is that there has been a huge increase in student attendance. Consequently, accommodating every pupil has proved a challenge. Father Vitalis approached Action in Africa with a request for us to participate in the "sponsor a desk" programme. We were happy to help and provided 50% of the funds requested, with the families of our sponsored children providing the rest of the monies.
Replacing Banana Plants killed during the drought
Through the generosity of our supporters, Action in Africa was able to fund the buying of young, disease resistant banana plants to replace those devastated by drought. These were distributed to affected farmers by Action in Africa Nyaishozi committee member Paul Mubiligi, pictured below.
Laptops for Nyaishozi Secondary School
Funds were sent to Nyaishozi for the purchase of 4 reconditioned laptops for students at Nyaishozi Secondary School, enabling them to become computer literate.
We have funded the building of a ‘placenta pit’ for the local government dispensary. Up until that time there has been no hygienic way of disposing of afterbirth. The pit will ensure that the maternity area is kept as sterile as possible.
Repairing the water pipes at the UN Village
The UN village outside Nyaishozi was built to house displaced refugees from Rwanda and Burundi. Pictured left are children using one of the four water taps, now working properly, having been repaired by Action in Africa.