While volunteering in Tanzania, East Africa, in 2009-10 I learnt the value of giving a hand up rather than a hand out. In a developing country like this one, there is no such thing as government assistance, free health care or free education, so having some kind of potentially money earning skills is incredibly important.
I have since returned to settle in Renmark, South Australia. I am enjoying living here and have met some wonderful people, but Africa is calling me again so I am returning for a very short trip in October with my one year old baby, with a longer trip planned for next year.
While I am there next month I have organised to hold craft workshops in the village of Sinon, just outside the busy, dusty, sometimes crazy town of Arusha, Tanzania. I will be putting into practise the theory of giving a hand up, by teaching disadvantaged mamas from food water shelter some new eco-friendly skills such as using old magazines to create unique bowls and beads, and using small otherwise useless fabric scraps to create vibrantly coloured patchwork bags and cushions, with the intent of then selling their creations at the local tourist market.
With access to the supplies needed, these mamas will be able to potentially generate an income from otherwise wasted resources. This is were I need your help! I am looking for donations of craft supplies, new or used, such as small scissors (for cutting paper), clear plastic rulers, pens (any colour), toothpicks, small paintbrushes, velcro, pins, pincushions, and small bottles of PVA glue (unopened). Any donations of these supplies (or even cash for me to buy them when I get there to save me carrying it all) will be very much appreciated, so if you have anything lying around that you can spare, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org . Asante sana! (that's swahili for thank you very much!)