Over the past months We thank God for His blessing and leading and for the joy of seeing lives change. We have also had moments of sadness and reflection. In the last blog Kai spoke about the impact of animals in the children’s lives and not too long ago we lost Black, one of our puppies, it all happened so quick, one day healthy and few days later gone. However this taught us to mourn together as a family, although we all processed it very differently. We are learning that the good and the bad, the blessings and the challenges all work together to build us as a community.
We Thank God for the opportunities He constantly gives us, working in a foreign land (although is most definitely home for us now) can be very interesting. For us as a team there are always challenges and many of them are related to culture and the ways of Tanzania. Over the last three years we have been involved in the distribution of reusable sanitary towels. This has been predominantly in local schools, but also in the local village area here where we live. So far we have given 730 packs, mainly to teenage girls.
These packs we have brought in from Kenya and they are such an amazing quality lasting between 3 - 5 years for each girl. We take things like this so for granted in the West, but here things are very different. Most families cannot afford such luxuries and therefore the girls miss school one week every month, which massively affects their education, normally causing them to finish early, or they end up sleeping with local men in payment for sanitary towels. Of course both are unacceptable. Our desire is to see this change in Tanzania and for many, many girls to receive these kits. You would think this would be easy as there is a need and due to wonderful people across three continents we have been able to begin to meet that need. However, things are never that simple. Seventeen months ago we had a shipment of 450 Packs come from Kenya to be distributed in Maweni Secondary School, a local government school close to where we live. We were able to safely get them through the border, after Rachael had many meetings with different departments in relation to them being accepted and in May 2021 we delivered them to the school
This photo is us actually giving them out recently after over a year of waiting for all the political boxes to be ticked. What was in the beginning very simple, as different people wanting to be involved were fighting among themselves and different government personnel were changing, yes it took over a year. However we thank God because through this we were able to build so many connections in both local and regional government and also now have a local organization with a similar vision that we are able to partner with and work together with.
Thank you to all of those who helped make this possible in your generous giving and we are sorry it took so long to be realized. Please pray and continue to support us as we work to see this ministry grow and many more girls be able to finish school without compromise and to be educated about personal hygiene and care for their bodies including sexual boundaries. These packs have such an impact as girls are now able to get qualifications, move on to further education and therefore better career prospects ultimately changing a nation. Now we are looking at working with the local relationships we have and actually produce these Sanitary Towel Packs here in Tanga. Please pray for provision, necessary training and the right way forward to see this in the near future.