You all know about the Women’s Empowerment Projects that we have been doing since 2008. We did this in conjunction with the Diocese of Central Tanzania and have pretty much covered the area, it continues to grow as loans are repaid and new groups formed. Next on our itinerary is going to those villages we have come to know so well and meeting with the women.

Starting in 2017 we have expanded by joining up with CCT, Christian Council of Tanzania, headed up by Rev. Canon Moses Matonya, whom many of you have met. CCT is an NGO and because it is country wide, works with the government of TZ in improving the lives of Tanzanians, Christian and non-Christians. How this has affected Karimu, is that CCT has to get permission to work in the areas, coordinate with the District Commissioners and follow Government guidelines, even for such things as taking photographs. Each village we visit, we sign guestbooks at the Commissioner’s office for that area, and Ruth files a report on what we have done there.

The biggest focus is on Female Gender issues, mainly Female Genital Mutilation, or cutting. They go out to rural areas and speak with people, including the women who perform this circumcision. They teach how there is nothing sacred or good about this age-old practice and how dangerous it is for the health of the woman. This program is called “Women in the Light” because as they “see” a new way of viewing this custom they are seeing the light. This is where Karimu comes in by providing solar lights to those individuals who are embracing the changes and helping to stop FGM.

This is why we have been traveling so far and long these past 10 days! From one end of the country to the other. I don’t know how Ruth manages this year round. She is an amazing woman! Right now, 50 solar kits are waiting to be distributed in support of this stopping FGM project. We also will start some Women’s Empowerment projects where women can earn income. AEG also provides solar kits which are Pay-Go kits. I mentioned those in an earlier post. Men have been supporting this, especially some of the village elders and they have solar kits as a way of thanking them . As Tally wrote, they help in so many ways.

Will close for now, we left Tim at the Mwanza airport, as he goes for a holiday in Zanzibar, and will continue our journey of 12+ hours in the vehicle to get to Dodoma and the Guest House!!

Thank you all so much for your support of this wonderful work. I so wish you could meet the women in person and see what I am seeing. We will have videos and photos taken by Tim, thought it will be awhile as he has so much footage to go through.

I hope I can figure out how to post photos on the blog. The format is new and a mystery to me right now.

Goodnight! Jessie