Monthly Archives: June 2007

Thanks to Rosemary Hurrell and friends for knitting and donating ten beautiful teddy bears!

A group of Knutsford women, including Rosemary Hurrell, kindly knitted ten teddies for KIWOHEDE children in crisis.

Six teddies were given to each of the girls currently living in the Mama J Block at the Bunju centre. They were speechless when they realised that there was one for each of them. Some of the girls had never seen a teddy before, let alone had their own.

These teddies will not only be cuddled and loved by the girls, they will play an important role in psycho-social counselling, helping the girls to talk about any abuse that they have experienced.

Four more teddies were given to the children of girls attending the rural Mbeya centre.

A Story from the Bunju Centre

A Story from the Bunju Centre

Although primary education is compulsory in Tanzania, for many it is not that simple. In order for children to attend school, they must have a uniform and, in many schools, shoes as well. Not only does the money for uniform have to be found, but attending school means hours not working, putting a strain on hand-to-mouth existence.

One girl attending the Bungu centre grew up in a rural area in the west of Tanzania with her mother, who is deaf, and her father, who is blind. When a man told them he could take her to town for an education, her parents agrred, believing they were doing right by their daughter.

After a three day journey, with little food and water, she arrived in Dar es Salaam and immediately was put to work as a domestic worker. Bravely, she questioned her trafficker, saying that she had come to go to school, not to work. He told her that they were still sorting out the paperwork. She endured the work for six months, but as there was no sign of her situation changing, she took Tsh200/= from a cabinet in the house she was put to work in, and ran away (Tsh200/= is the cost of a single bus journey).

She climbed aboard a daladala (local bus), told them her story, and asked them to take her to the nearest police station (they didn’t charge her for the journey).

The police called KIWOHEDE, and she has been staying at the Bunju centre since.

During her first conversations with Mama Regina, the co-ordinator of the Bunju centre, she asked if KIWOHEDE could take her to school, as she came to Dar es Salaam to get an education. Her resilience is incredible.

This young woman was thirteen when she came to KIWOHEDE. She is now attending basic education and vocational training classes, and KIWOHEDE hopes to find a primary school place for her soon.

Current Projects

Current Projects

KIOTA and KIWOHEDE’s next project is to dig a borehole at the Bunju site. There is no existing water supply at the centre, nor in the surrounding area. Hygiene is poor. Kiwohede has made tremendous strides towards establishing economic activities at the centre, ranging from cloth making to food processing, however a lack of water impairs these activities. Having access to water will enable the girls using the centre to drink, cook, wash and work with greater freedom. The Tudor Trust has granted a one off payment of £2000 to finance the hand-pumping well.

We are currently looking for funds to provide solar power for two centres: Bunju and Mbeya.

Life after KIWOHEDE

KIWOHEDE’s work aims to empower young women, providing them with the skills to live an independent life, free from exploitation.

Having completed counselling, basic education and vocational training at the KIWOHEDE centres, upon ‘graduation’ some of the young women are given packages and assistance in order to set up their own businesses.

I visited some of the shops owned by KIWOHEDE graduates and was pleased to see that some are now in a position to give something back to KIWOHEDE, by employing some of the current KIWOHEDE girls as apprentices!