It was absolutely perfect–not a dramatic, public event (it was just James, a few village executives,the workers, and me)–but James’ excitement and enthusiasm felt almost tangible.
For the past three past weeks, James has worked endlessly to finalize the building proposal for the new school. A process that I have come to learn is more meticulous than even the most complicated college application (kind of sad that that is all I can compare it to, but you get the drift). After a lot of patience and some compliance on our part, the proposal was approved with flying colors by the Moshi municipal ministry of education, and it has now been sent to Dar-Es-Salaam (Tanzanian business capital) to be officially registered by the country government.
In the meanwhile, we were given the go-ahead to begin construction. And so yesterday, I met James in town. He had just purchased the piping for the plumbing, and together, along with a truck load of supplies that followed, we ventured to Newland. In the past month, I have made this drive several times, and each time, I am continually amazed by the beauty that is Newland. It is a beauty that has changed since I first got here. The sunflower fields have been cut for harvest, and in their wake, the wildflowers have taken over, reclaiming their land back.
We pulled up to the site of the new school to see the workers busy digging trenches for the plumbing. We got out to walk along part of the newly dug trench, and James stopped to take it all in. He said with a huge smile on his face, “You know Lucia, this is going to be where the classrooms are going to be!” And he pointed to the land right next to where he was standing. He then ran over to where one boy was rhythmically hoisting a shovel up and down into the ground, and asked if he could try. He laughed as he pounded the shovel into the ground, pushing the dirt over to one side.
On the drive into Newland, James told me that when he was a child, public school cost one dollar per year. At the time, he did not have the money to pay for it, and he had to sell his bike so that he could go to school. He explained that this is one of the reasons that he feels so called to educating the “vulnerable children” in Tanzania. Watching James swing that shovel into the ground, I could see how determined he is to help these children, to make this vision a reality. He has come a long way, and now because of this school, others like him will now have an opportunity to receive an education. It was pretty amazing to witness.
The plumber and his workers say that they expect to finish digging the trenches and installing the tubing in the next few days, and after that, construction on the school will officially begin! James says that he thinks everything is about to get moving really fast, and judging by how fast the men were working yesterday, that is an understatement!
As for me, I have been busy working with the children at St. Timothy’s and helping with some of the Tanzania Children Concern outreach. I am planning to meet Nyla and Bryce in Kisumu, Kenya this upcoming weekend, and together we are going to launch the Rita Rose Drip Irrigation Garden! I look forward to keeping you updated on the school construction and everything else that is going on over here! Thank you again for being a part of all of this!
Yours In Hope,