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  • Laurel Werner

Water to Soko School, "No FGM!" and Bees!


This week has been wonderful for the East Kahe ward and KiliTech as they came together for the Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) campaign. The event took place at Ghona Secondary school. It is the only secondary school in East Kahe Ward where all parents in the area expect their children to study. The school has the total number of 348 students. Some students are walking more than 15 KM daily coming to school. The school has two main and very noticeable challenges, one is toilets and second is dormitories for students who are coming from far places.

The launching of FGM campaign went well as it began with a debate among the students who had the motion which stated that, ‘IS IT TRUE THAT THERE IS A VIOLATION OF CHILD RIGHTS IN THE COMMUNITY’ the debate went well and both proposing side and opposing side agreed that there are those practices and few mentioned were as follows:

  1. Female Genital Mutilation

  2. Child abuse

  3. Child trafficking

  4. Early marriages

Just to mention, the most exciting thing was that these young ones could debate in English something we never thought could happen in that area! The students received well the comments and were very much excited with new knowledge they received. Our assessment for the day concluded that it was a huge success and brilliant start of the campaign hopping that the campaign is going to be very successful!

In the future we plan to visit primary schools there are more than 10 schools in the entire ward. The plan is at least to visit one school in every village. We will also focus to visit churches on Sunday afternoons after mass. The campaign is aiming to get everyone involved but especially women though we will not isolate the men. So the distribution is like this:

i. 7 – 13 years, this group will be targeted by the campaign and the message for this set of group is to create awareness and encourage them to report any cases of child abuse including FGM to the local authorities including teachers and the police.
ii. 14 – 17 years, the campaign aims at introducing this group to family health education and HIV AIDS.
iii. 18 and more years, the campaign aims at encouraging them to protect the young, show them the effects of medieval practices such as FGM can do to their children and also emphasize on the benefits of family planning.

The campaign will address each group’s needs and everyone will be involved. T-shirts will be printed on each campaign carrying the message for is to be said on that particular day. Expenses used to date is $ 1600 which covers the cost of T-shirt printing and campaign costs. We have $5,000 donated to the campaign from a very generous donor from the USA!

We have also completed running water to the Soko primary school, and over two hundred children now have access to water!! Before women would carry buckets for 1KM from the well to the school for the children to share all day long. KiliTech has run a water line from the well to the school so there is now fresh water every day! Now we are focusing on repairing the septic tank that was destroyed in May of 2016 from heavy rains. KiliTech is donating the money to repair the toilets and septic so that the children no longer have to go to the bathroom in the nearby field. Currently, there is great risk of cholera and other diseases because there are no toilets!

Here is where the septic tank collapsed and KiliTech is building a new septic for the children and has donated $5,000 for this cause. Until the septic tank is finished the toilets cannot be repaired and the children and teachers use the field as their bathroom! This will truly be a blessing to have this repaired! This is also the location KiliTech brought solar power and we now have solar electricity to the school and even a solar TV!!

We finished the bee keeping training over four days and even though the men have bees in the hives that KiliTech placed a few months ago, the hives are not ready yet to get the honey! Everyone is prepared though on how to safely get the honey without harming the bees!

#eastkaheward #kilitech #kilimanjaro

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