Gold for Kilgoris

Good news. Admittedly, this has nothing to do with the Tareto Maa Center. At least not in a narrow sense. But nevertheless it is a reason to celebrate for us and for the girls in the rescue center.

Yesterday, the Kenyan athlete David Rudisha set a new 800m world record at the Olympic Games in London and won a gold medal. David Rudisha was born in Kilgoris, so he is a kind of local hero, and everybody in our area is proud and happy.

A good reason to celebrate.  🙂

No. 1 in Transmara District – Success at school competitions

The students of the Naitawang Riverside Acadamy have been very successful in several competitions in singing and story telling. In the Kilgoris Division they made it no. 1. In the wider Transmara District they were no. 1 as well. And in the competition of the whole Rift Valley Province they were no. 2 of 100 schools. They received 83 points – 3 more and they would have been invited to the national competition in Nairobi. Anyway, the children were very happy and proud.

Competitions like this are very important for private schools in Kenya to build reputation. For the Maasai people singing and dancing are very important parts of their culture. So the contests were an important achievement for the new acadamy (which was founded by Tareto Maa together with the local community).

This picture shows the students who participated for our school. Behind them you see Rona, the pastor and the teachers.

The students of the Naitawang Riverside Acadamy

Interim Review 2012

It’s July. Time to look back on the first half of this year.

What has Tareto Maa achieved in 2012? What are the tasks for the second half of 2012? What are the prospects for 2013?

To sum it up, the first half-year was successful and Tareto Maa is on a good path for 2012. But the organization will have to face some major challenges in 2013.

New dormitory
A main task for 2012 was to build a new and permanent dormitory (in order to substitute the previous temporary building). With the help from supporters in the local community as well as from donors abroad, Tareto Maa was able to construct the new building in the first quarter of 2012. At the end of May, the children moved in (see: www.tareto-maa.org/new-dormitory-completed/).

Re-launch of website
The Tareto Maa website www.tareto-maa.org was completely restructured and redesigned, including several options for direct support now and links to the social media.

Henhouse and chickens
Due to the support of donors worldwide, Tareto Maa was able to build a henhouse and to buy 30 chickens (see: www.tareto-maa.org/the-chickens-moved-in/). The chickens will help to provide protein and healthy food to the children in the rescue center.

Vegetable garden
Another proposal was to plant a second vegetable garden for the rescue center. For this project the team is still looking for a solution. The problem is: Tareto Maa is running out of space. For many weeks now the team has been talking to a neighbour, and Gladys has offered him an exchange of land that she owns some miles away for his land that is adjacent to Tareto Maa’s site. The neighbour delays his decision from week to week. Probably someone in his family objects to Tareto Maa having this land. In case his final answer is “no” (after many, many weeks of negotiating!), there is an emergency option (that Gladys and her family move to another place, and Tareto Maa uses Glady’s land). But this is only an emergency solution.

Sanitary towels
Sanitary towels and other sanitary items are a substantial expense for the rescue center. Tareto Maa is going to test re-usable sanitary towels which are produced locally and which would help to save money in the long run. If the girls are happy with these re-usable sanitary towels, Tareto Maa will try to raise money to buy a sufficient amount of them.

Naitawang Riverside Acadamy
The new primary school which was opened in January 2012, was approved by the Kenyan government. We can apply for government funds to extend the school from January 2013. But to build another classroom this year, we have to raise the funds ourselves. Some donors from abroad supported Tareto Maa with this task. We had a first fundraising event in the local community, and will try to raise further funds in September. We plan to open the new classroom in January 2013.

Extension of the facilities
A second solar panel was installed at the Tareto Maa Center. Now we have a sufficient amount of electricity to use bulbs when the children do their school homework in the evening (instead of using unhealthy petroleum lamps), to listen to a radio from time to time, and to charge the batteries of a computer. A new computer was donated by donors in Europe, and will be taken to Kenya in August.

Furthermore we built additional lavatories for the 95 children in the Tareto Maa Center. The only construction project that has failed so far is the digging of a well for drinking water. The well collapsed, and an engineer told us that digging by manual means will not do – the soil is too muddy, the well would collapse again. So we need some kind of mechanical digging device which is quite expensive and which we cannot afford at the moment.

Sponsorships
In 2012, many more children found an individual sponsor. At the moment, 54 of the 95 girls in the rescue center have a sponsor.

If you are interested in supporting one of the girls, or if you know someone who might be interested, please send an email to: contact@tareto-maa.org.

Kindergarten
Because of the new dormitory, a room in the previous dormitory became available. Tareto Maa plans to open a nursery in this room. At the moment the team is preparing this new project.

Prospects for the second half-year 2012
There are two main objectives for the second half of 2012: a local event to abandon FGM, and trying to find institutional partners who can help us with funds in the next year(s).

The Tareto Maa team believes that the time is ripe to make a major step to abandon FGM in the local community. Together with the Christian and the Muslim churches, the district government and two other local charities, we want to organize a public event that shall discuss the topic of FGM – as well as related topics like child marriages, the importance of school education for girls, and sexual and reproductive health. But the event is not only about giving information, it is about trying to reach a joint decision of the community to abandon FGM together “here and now”. Of course, this will not reduce the cases of female mutilation to zero all at once. But if our campaign and the public event are successful, it will give a major boost in the fight against FGM.

Currently, we are addressing foundations and international donor organizations to ask them to support this event (which is scheduled for November 2012 and which has a total budget of 1,100 Euro / 1,430 USD).

In general, the addressing of institutional partners is the second major task for the forthcoming months. Tareto Maa needs to find partners that help us to develop the project. Otherwise there is a huge risk that eventually we will run out of funds (as the number of girls in the rescue center and the amounts which we need for school fees are increasing).

Prospects for 2013
As more girls will ask for shelter in the next “circumcision season” (Nov/Dec) and as nearly a dozen of the girls who already live in the rescue center will turn from primary to secondary school (which means a substantial increase of school fees), Tareto Maa will face major financial challenges in 2013. Therefore, we need to work as hard as we can in 2012 to provide a reliable income stream so that Tareto Maa will be able to cope with these challenges next year.

Harambee took place

The local fundraising event for the school took place. But unfortunately the “Harambee” was not very successful this time. We raised 80,000 Kenyan Shillings (= ca. 800 Euro / 950 USD). We hoped for 3 times more.

We think the reason for this is not that the local community feels overstrained or bothered by the fundraising events of Tareto Maa. The reason was bad timing, and that very few people showed up for the Harambee. The harvest time did not start in Transmara yet. Therefore people did not have lots of money to donate.
80,000 KES is the lowest result we ever had with a Harambee. But nevertheless, for rural Africa this is a big amount of money.

For building the next class, the Kenyan team has a total of 180,000 KES now. 320,000 KES (= ca. 3,200 Euro / 3,800 USD) are still needed.

As some donors from abroad promised to contribute (and some of them already donated) for the new classroom, we have some additional money. That will not be sufficient to complete the building. But we think it will help us to go a long way. In addition to that we want to organize another Harambee in September (after harvest time) and ask the local people then to help us completing the building.

Somehow or other there has to be a new classroom. And we are very confident: there will be.

Tareto Maa intends to open a kindergarten

Thanks to the new dormitory, two rooms in the previous rescue center became available. One room will be used as a dining hall. In the other room a nursery shall be established.

Many parents have asked Tareto Maa whether we could arrange assistance and care for their small children. The parents would pay a fee for the kindergarten. With this money we could pay for food, toys and childcare. Furthermore we would try to save some of the fees so that in a couple of years we will be able to build a stone house for the kindergarten – as soon as the present “shanty” is not usable anymore (depending on rainfall this will be the case in 3 to 5 years time).

The nursery is a good chance to reduce the drop off rate of girls in school. Many girls start to attend school too late. When they reach puberty, they feel ashamed to be in the same class as children who are much younger. Then they break off school. By means of the kindergarten we can help the children to attend school in a younger age.

Harambee to expand the school

On July 1, 2012, Tareto Maa will hold a Harambee and ask the local community for donations to build another classroom.

Our school started with two classes in January 2012. We can apply for government funds not till the school operated for an entire year. This will be January 2013 – too late to establish another class this year.

To build a new classroom we need 500,000 Kenyan shillings (= ca. 5.000 Euro / 6,300 USD). 100,000 shillings can be provided by the fees which the school earned. 400,000 shillings are still needed.

Maybe one single event will not be sufficient to raise such a big amount. So after the Harambee we have to check how to collect the amount that might still be lacking then.

Henhouse built

The henhouse we raised funds for on Betterplace is completed now. So the 30 chicken can move in soon and will have a safe place for the night there.

New dormitory completed

The new dormitory of the Tareto Maa Center is completed now, and the girls moved in.

Furthermore we built new lavatories for the girls.

 

Some of the girls in front of the new dormitory

 

Our first building with glass windows

 

In front of the main entrance

 

The new lavatories

New website online

Today we officially launched the new Tareto Maa website. It provides updated information and photos, a new design and many links to our supporter groups and donation platforms.

Many thanks to all the people who helped to set up this new site!