Interview with an Intern: Tomoki

Art in Tanzania receives many different interns and volunteers from different parts of the world, all year round. As an intern myself, it is interesting to meet and live among such a diverse group of people, learn about their home countries and what they are doing with Art in Tanzania. So I decided to interview one intern originally from Japan; Tomoki…

Q: What is your name and where are you from?

A: My name is Tomoki Noguchi and originally I am from Japan but I go to university in New York in the US.

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Tomoki hard at work in the office

Q: How long have you been in Tanzania?

A: So far I have been here for 15 days and I am staying for 1 month. So I’m about half way through. It is also my first time in Africa.

Q: Where did you hear about Art in Tanzania?

A: I heard about Art in Tanzania through my university on the internship website. AIT was posted on the webpage. Also, one of my friends came here last year so he told me all about it.

Q: What is your job as an intern with Art in Tanzania?

A: I am working on sanitation projects. So currently I am analysing the efficiency of composting/dry toilets. In the future Art in Tanzania are hoping to put dry toilet systems in schools all across Tanzania and I am helping to do the research for this.

Q: Is living in Tanzania very different to living in your home country?

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Boxing Day at the beach with Glory of Africa Orphanage

A: Yeah, of course, no place is the same. The roads here are rubbish, I hate shaking. I get stomachache and headache, the government should fix that; there should be pavement. I don’t understand, that should be top priority – I was shocked.

Q: What are you enjoying most about Tanzania?

A: I enjoy making new friends from all over the world. Some of the food I enjoy but some I don’t really like. I haven’t tried much traditional food but I really like cassava. I’m used to eating things like chapatis and cassava so it’s good.

Q: What do you miss most about your home?

A: I don’t really miss America that much. I’ve been missing many things from Japan. For example sanitation and traditional Japanese food, of course. Tokyo city overall. But what i’ve been missing is the culture in more developed countries. When I went to the hospital I didn’t feel like they were professional or had the responsibility of doctors.

Q: Do you think you will come back and visit?

A: I would definitely like to come back and visit Moshi to see Kilimajaro and may be even climb it. I would also like to see a national park.

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Tomoki with one of the house dogs; JJ

 

“I’m really enjoying my time in Tanzania because of the people here, everyone is so friendly and welcoming, especially JJ!”

Asante sana,

Lily

 

 

Evening English Class: Interview with Zabron

‘TIA: This Is Africa’ 

Used to explain the laid back, relaxed, African way of living: ‘This is Africa‘ is a common phrase heard around the volunteer compound and Dar es Salaam in general. Despite working on bongo time (african timing), having TIA permanently carved into my brain, and adjusting to a less structured way of living; 5pm on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday—without fail—is the time scheduled for the evening English class. Putting spelling and grammar aside, last Mondays lesson was a little bit different. I decided to interview one of the students that regularly attends the class; Zabron. You see, I may know that Zabron can identify the subject, verb and object in a sentence, and I know that he can explain the difference between and adjective and an adverb; but I don’t know much about him. So I introduce, to you, Zabron Anthony…

  Q: What is your name and where do you live?

Screen Shot 2018-01-05 at 10.36.15 A: My name is Zabron Anthony. I live at Bagamoyo in Kiharaka Village and have been living in that place for 9 years.

 Q: And where did you grow up?

A: I was born in Shinyanga and from here that is about 1,000km. My parents were living in poverty so they could not afford to send me to school. I have been faced with a lot of challenges but I am really thankful for and enjoy the English classes.

  Q: What is your everyday job?

A: My job is that I am a security guard in Mbweni. This job helps me to pay school fees and I have only been working there since 2014 because of school. I plan to leave this job when I start school again. From my home to Mbweni is 2 hours because I walk but other days I use public transport. I don’t enjoy this job very much because of low wages.

  Q: Do you get a chance to practice what you learn at the English classes in your job?

A: A lot of people at my job only speak Swahili and that is a challenge I have because they don’t like to learn things that help you to advance. But at the moment I like to learn from my phone away from the English classes. I like looking at the lyrics of songs. When I have a chance I watch the BBC and when I do not have chance to watch TV I just watch my phone. If I am busy at work I listen to the radio so that I can learn the pronunciation and my aim is to learn English and speak it like you.

  Q: And how long have you been coming to the English classes?

A: I have been coming to these classes for a long time. I started with Art in Tanzania in 2014 for 4 months but left because of school. I finished school last year so this year I come to AIT as to improve my language because I like to know English.

  Q: Is your school/college English speaking?

A: There is English speaking at the college and there is also French but they favour English when they want people to join the college.

Q: And finally, what do you hope to do with English in the near future? 

A: In the Near future this English will help me to join the college next year, I am trying to learn good things that will help me in the future. I would like to visit England but I haven’t the support. If I get the support it would be good because I can meet more people who will help me learn. If it will happen even for only one month it will be really good.

 “When I learn English I have the opportunity to do a lot because it is an international language”

IMG_2841 (1) Art in Tanzania volunteers and interns are working to help support and to benefit
people within the local community. Providing English classes like these give locals a chance to improve their understanding and competence within the language; overall
giving them more opportunities. To read more about some of the education programmes offered by Art in Tanzania you can visit our website .

Asante sana,

Lily

 

 

Boxing Day at Bahari Beach with Glory of Africa Orphanage

Swapping winter coats for t-shirts & shorts, wellies for flip-flops, and roast dinners for barbecues it’s safe to say Christmas 2017 has been unlike any other for me and spending Boxing Day at the beach with children from the Glory of Africa Orphanage has definitely been a highlight!

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The idea of a day trip to the beach stemmed from one of our dutch volunteers, Michel, who during his stay at AIT has been teaching English to the children at the orphanage. With donations from himself, Art in Tanzania and some of the other volunteers this idea was made into a reality. On December 26th at 11:30 am we arrived at the Glory of Africa to find the children packed and ready for a blue sea and white sand filled boxing day. After piling into a mini bus we were on our way to Bahari Beach, the local beach which is around a 25 minute drive from the orphanage. Within seconds of arriving the children had already found a spot to put their things and were running around and playing in the sea.

From the budget that was created for the day trip, we were able to buy lunch and drinks for the children which consisted of freshly made rice, beans, vegetables and bananas! Whether they were playing football on the sand or splashing in the sea I could see smiles for miles as they enjoyed their boxing day in the sun, sand and sea.

Without the donations from everyone involved in organising, this day would have not been possible so i’d like to say Asanta sana to Michiel and Art in Tanzania for playing a big part in this trip going ahead!

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+30 degree heat and sand on my feet is far from the norm of a typical Boxing Day in England but I wouldn’t have it any other way. With Art in Tanzania I have been able to have fantastic new experiences, become accustomed to african culture and live in proper Tanzanian style. Volunteers and interns are always coming up with ideas to help or even simply to treat members of the local community and with Art in Tanzania we can make these ideas a reality! If you’d like to be involved or learn more about Art in Tanzania and our mission please visit our website for details!

Asante sana,

Lily 

Football with the Local Children

As well as their own projects, Art in Tanzania interns and volunteers can participate in different projects and activities throughout their stay. Nette, a student from Finland who is here conducting research for her thesis, is a big fan of football; luckily enough so are the local children! Barely even a 5 minute walk from the Dar es Salaam AIT compound is a big open space that acts a pitch where she was able to have a kick-a-bout with a few of the kids, and soon enough more and more came to join in!

These types of activities are available to all interns and volunteers; whether it be an evening hobby or taking part in one of our Sports Placements. There are many different roles to play when undergoing a Sports Placement and one of the most popular choices among volunteers/interns is the Sports Coaching projects:

Sports Coaching with Art in Tanzania 

Each sports coaching placement is specifically tailored to the individual who is participating in the project. Although football is a much loved sport in Tanzania and the most popular among the sports programs, new games and sport activities are welcomed to be introduced. In the past, we have had volunteers introducing the likes of gymnastics, and capoeira – an Afro-Brazilian martial art that combines elements of dance, acrobatics and music. Sports classes in the communities are introduced as part of the children’s curriculum as well as our new popular approach involving community sport mornings whereby local people are bought together on Saturday mornings for health training. With the native language being Swahili, the in-country staff are always happy to assist as a translator where needed; brushing up on a few phrases can never hurt!

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Although the ages of the children that get involved can vary; the high level of enthusiasm  in every child is the same! They really get involved and seem to love every minute of the activities. To read more about what we do within sport in local communities and our different projects don’t hesitate to visit our website!

Asante sana,

Lily

Visit to the National Museum of Dar-es-Salaam

As projects take place Monday-Friday, interns and volunteers have the weekends for trips and other activities; such as visiting the National Museum of Dar es Salaam!

Last Saturday, myself and two other interns took a trip to Dar city centre. Starting in Tegeta, the journey lasted about two hours due to connecting buses in Mbusho and typical weekend traffic! Once there, before heading to the Museum, we stopped at the local fish market located near the ferry port for some lunch where we were able to have some  delicious fresh fish. En route to the museum we passed some notable buildings such as the offices belonging to parliamentary members and the official office of the Prime Minister, Kassim Majaliwa.

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Working with Art in Tanzania, the Dar es Salaam National Museum has partnered with our organisation in which creating the program: Arts and Music Against Corruption in Africa. This program sees how we can use the arts; such as music and dance, to promote anti-corruption in an interesting and creative way.

Opened to the public on the 7th December 1940, the National Museum is located along Shaban Robert Street at the junction of Sokoine Drive near the Botanical Gardens. It is one of the 5 museums in the country that form the National Museum of Tanzania. Known as the King George V Memorial on its first opening as a dedication to the head of state at the time, the museum began its expansion when Taganyika gained its independence between 1962 and 1964. With the expansion leading to five branches being made, the King George V Memorial transformed into the National Museum displaying a range of exhibits from historical and contemporary art to ethnographic collections on Tanzanian cultures.

One of the most famous exhibits in the museum is named ‘The Cradle of Human Kind’ which displays fossils found in the Olduvai Gorge, a 50km long canyon in northern
Tanzania and one of the most important paleoanthropological sites. One of the most famous artefacts in the museum is located in this exhibit. In 1959 British Archaeologist, Mary Leakey, discovered the of skull of the Paranthropus boisei, an (extinct) hominid. Some of the fossils in ‘The Cradle of Human Kind’ exhibition date back 2 million years and have formed the basis of our understanding of the human evolution!

Being able to travel to the city and other places around Dar-es-Salaam is the best way to explore the culture of Tanzania, and the National Museum taught us a lot about the countries history and its people. If you would like to learn more about the National Museum of Dar-es-Salaam or any of the other 5 museums that are part of the National Museum of Tanzania then head over to their Facebook page, give it a like and have a browse!

Tumaini Nursery School

With Art in Tanzania supporting over 100 community schools and education centres, there are many different location opportunities for teaching projects for volunteers/interns. Academic centres benefit from the work of interns and volunteers  as innovative methods of teaching are introduced helping not only the students but the staff also.

Earlier this week I was given the opportunity to visit the local pre-school in Madale IMG_2735 (1)
Village; Tumaini Nursery School. Although there is no current project at this particular time, I was able to visit to experience a typical lesson and document the work of previous volunteers.

At this school, ages range from two to six and here are three separate classes for different age groups. The aim of Tumaini nursery is to prepare the young students before their transition to primary school; ensuring that they are at the appropriate academic level. Not only have Art in Tanzania volunteers been involved in teaching and education projects at Tumaini, but also projects involving construction to help enhance the quality of the nursery school. The renovation of classrooms to improve the teaching environment as well as the construction of basic facilities such as toilets (as pictured below) are some examples projects that have taken place in previous years.

On my particular visit to the school, the children were taking mathematics exams to monitor their progress so far and test whether they are ready to move on to the next level. For the oldest age group (5-6 yrs old) the exam consisted of addition and subtraction of numbers and different ways of writing these sums. However, for the IMG_2733younger years (2-3 yrs old) they will be called to the teacher individually or in small groups and asked questions about what they have been learning. This acts as a more relaxed approach for the younger ones. Once the exam is over, after about an hour, it is break time for the students and they are able to run outside and play. There is a large open space just in front of the classrooms where the children are able to run about safely and they are provided with a swing set that is indeed very popular! Like all nursery school children, they enjoy playing different games and this particular break time they formed a circle by holding hands and began to sing what sounded like a traditional nursery rhyme or song.

 

With the help and support of our volunteers, schools such as Tumaini Nursery School and local organisations are able to benefit from the various projects run by Art in Tanzania! To find out more about how to get involved or to get extra info about the various projects, don’t hesitate to visit our website!

Asante sana,

Lily 

Teaching at the Glory of Africa Orphanage

Hi!

I’m Lily and am a Social Media and Marketing intern at Art in Tanzania!

I accompanied one of my fellow interns, Michiel – a volunteer from Holland, to the Glory of Africa Orphanage located about 30 minutes from the Dar es Salaam compound. As part of his project, Michiel is teaching English to children of various ages ranging from 4 to 14 years old and I was able to go along to document what happens on a typical day.

First things first, let me give you a bit of an insight into what the Glory of Africa Orphanage is all about. Founded in 2012, Glory of Africa currently houses 8 children with many more in the neighbourhood coming every day for education and food which is made available through donations. Art in Tanzania’s interns and volunteers have been working with Glory of Africa since 2013 by creating different projects as a means of support. ‘The Glory Water Pipeline’ is an example of a clean water and sanitation project that was created in 2013 whereby volunteers raised money and donated a water tank to the orphanage. There is a classroom within the compound where you can find a blackboard, chalk, rows of desks and a cupboard filled with pencils and paper. All this is to ensure that the children have equipment for the lessons that take place and to provide a classroom environment.

Michiel usually visits the orphanage in the afternoon around 4pm after the children have finished their daily school routines, therefore lessons are a sort of after school activity for the children typically lasting between one and two hours. In previous weeks, the children have been learning the basics of English with one particular lesson focusing on various animals and the translation of these animals from Kiswahili to English. By the end of the lesson the children were able to successfully communicate in English what their favourite animal is and why! I went along with Michiel on his 4th visit to the orphanage. The lesson started off with a recap of the previous days teachings, which consisted of verbs, and then moved on to focus on different grammatical terms. This lesson had particular focus on nouns and identifying the nouns within in a sentence. Different sentences were written in English on the blackboard and the children were asked to come up to the front and underline the noun in each sentence, all correctly identifying the noun. From starting with simple English words to teaching various grammatical terms, their knowledge and understanding of English is coming along swimmingly as Michiel moves on to teaching more advanced topics aiming to introduce Human Rights perhaps to some of the older children.

IMG_2591With everything learned and the lesson over, it was time for some games! Football seems to be a loved sport in Tanzania, and the orphanage was no different…

Two footballs were given to the children and, joined my Michiel, they rushed out the door to have a kick about outside.The orphanage has a big open space where the children can play and run about between and after lessons. Everyone got involved in the game and the children looked extremely happy and full of energy; it was a great chance for them to get out and be active after learning. We ended up staying for around an hour and a half after the lesson playing and talking to the children which was a great way to get to know more about them outside of the classroom!

Taking the opportunity to volunteer by teaching English is a fantastic opportunity and what better way than to volunteer with Art in Tanzania and support local organisations such as the Glory of Africa Orphanage. With their desire to learn, teaching and getting to know these children seems so rewarding; being able to play games with them is a bonus too!

If you would like to take part in a project like this or for other volunteering opportunities, visit our website for more details!