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Dear Readers,

Jessie sent several pictures today of a wonderful visit to a new village ~ that is, new to our work.  I don’t know how to post them either, but I will tell you, the ladies looked happy and so did the pigs!  It appeared they had mellons to eat.  She and her nephew, Hugh will begin the long trek home tomorrow (Sunday) after church and lunch with Ruth Mbennah and her husband.  I’ve made that trip a number of times and it is arduous to say the least.  Long layovers in Dar es Salaam and even longer at Dulles.  She will get home late Monday night and will be greeted by her beloved dogs, Alice and Lisa.  Of course I am eager to see her but won’t call until she calls me.  Talk about jet lag!  As sad as I was not to be able to go, I realize  now  that I could not have done all that Jessie did ~ 15+ hours in a Land Rover on pothole full roads.  I have the greatest admiration for everything she has done.  When the photographer gets all the pictures together, and she said there are thousands, I am sure she will do a presentation and share this adventure with us.  In the meantime pray for their safe return.  Tally

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That I cannot seem to download photos!! Anyway, we are coming to the end of the trip, one more village to visit today to inspect their pig project. This is a new village. There are now 14 villages participating in the pig projects. More will be added when the loan repayments come through in August.

This is our last “working day”. Tomorrow, we lunch with Ruth and her husband then fly to Dar es Saalam. We have the most wretched flight times on this trip… leave Dar at 3:30 in the morning, and so it goes. Long layovers in Istanbul and Dulles. This is because we wanted cheaper fares, but next time will be more considerate of my age!!!

There is much good happening in Tanzania, the growth in infrastructure is enviable! New standard gage rail lines being installed with fast speed trains. All kinds of building going on in Dodoma, which is the capital, but had long been neglected in favor of Dar es Saalam. New fancy hotels, which make the Dodoma Hotel look so pitiful (it used to be the fancy hotel).

Houses, apartment buildings, it is easy to get lost because the land and cityscapes have changed so much. More roads have been paved, though road travel is still slow due to the fact that there is only one main road through the country and the trucks are abundant until the rail lines are completed.

Still, people’s lives are a continuous struggle in the rural areas, cities too. In countries with without natural resources to provide income, and a larger tax base from individuals and business, governments rely on support from other countries. In the past, this was a dodgy business as the corruption skimmed so much money off the top. (some of these kinds of problems remind me of home, where businesses don’t pay any taxes, and the top 1% – well you know what I mean here).

Jessie

This is so amazing.  Jessie has been sleeping on a bed about the size of an ironing board.  Tonight, to take her nephew to see the majesty and wonder of Africa they will be in Morogoro &  will be up and out at 5:00;  that’s when the animals come out.  It is good that you cannot see my ~  face ~ COLOR.  For an unexpected pleasure to me, she called this morning and said I sounded as if I was in Whispering Pines  Technology!  Pray for Jessie and her grandnephew.  They are a long way home and she comes home with the most heart warming stories & how we can help those who could no help those in the Good Samaritan story.   Blessings and love to our supporters.  Tally

Jessie wrote quite a lengthy report of a meeting she had this morning (Monday, 22 July) with the Christian Council of Tanzania (CCT) and she asked me to share most of it on the blog.  Typical of the Africans they begin their working day with a song.  They take a chai (tea) break at 11:00 before continuing their meetings.  This also is the practice at the college where we once taught.  In some ways they are more civilized than we in America.

CCT was formed in 1934 and serves as an umbrella organization that brings protestant denominations and church related organizations together.  Our dear friend Moses Matonya is the Secretary General of CCT. Their areas of focus are:  Women’s Development, Children and Gender, Youth Development, Health and HIV/AIDs, Advocacy and Policy Analysis, Climate Change, Environment and Food Security.  Jessie said it is a results-based organization.  It requires correct behaviors to reach the desired goals.

Jessie has been with Ruth Mbennah these first weeks.  Ruth and her staff train village leaders.  They teach about income-producing activities, saving for tomorrow, economic power and micro-credit initiatives.  Jessie has been in Northern Tanzania with Ruth, dealing with Gender Based Violence and Female Genital Mutilation.  She has written about that in earlier reports.

Karimutanzania supports the areas mentioned above and we continue to supply solar lights.  We have written of the benefits of the solar kits which we are using to reinforce good behaviors.  Although Karimu has actually given some of the kits to schools, clinics, and a Mosque; the kits can now be purchased by individuals at a price they can afford.  Without having to purchase charcoal and kerosene the individual can pay off the debt of the solar light by weekly installments.   

Jessie has committed Karimu to support the women’s projects proposed by Ruth Mbennah.  We shall provide $8,000 to $10,000 which means we need more grants and more donations.  As we say over and over, any amount makes a difference.  CCT is a game-changer for Tanzania.  Jessie and I are privileged to have a part in their ministry.  Blessings and love to all of our readers.  Tally

Here is Jessie’s grandnephew with some of the children that he has met in villages.  Obviously, they love him and he looks pretty happy too.

Yesterday, we visited Mkumi where the women had new pig projects. After arriving to music (singing and drumming) we learned about their projects and how well they are going. After eating lunch, we toured the various pens. My Grand Nephew, Hugh loves visiting with the children, taking their photos and showing them to them. Some of the young ones do not know what they look like as there are no mirrors around. They point to each other saying “that is you!”

There are 12 parishes in the program now and Hilda counts 3,165 women participating. New groups will be added in the fall when existing, new groups repay their loans.

The goat projects have not done well. The goats are not thriving in the areas (not sure why, will find out more about that) and they are not as prolific as pigs. Too many of the goats had male babies and distributing new goats to new groups just became a logistical headache. So, those groups has switched back to pigs.

One of the projects in Mkumi yesterday is making tie died fabrics which the women sell locally. That seems to be working well.

Thank you all for your prayers and support. Tomorrow will tell you more about the other work we are doing with CCT. Moses is coming to Pinehurst on August 8th, we will have a party so keep the 9th or 10th open in your calendars for an evening cocktail party.

Bye for now, Jessie

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