Sunday, 14 August 2016

Drama, drama, drama at Lutengano

Tuesday and Wednesday were our last two days in a Tanzanian school. We spent the morning on the long five-minute walk to school, so we were all able to have a well-deserved lie-in. Once all the introductions took place, we all got into different groups to discuss multiple ideas about the play. Each three groups came up with two different ideas, one comedy and one tragedy.

Everybody voted on the idea they liked best and the winning one was "Becky says no" which was in fond reference to a group joke of "Becca says no". The group decided on the different elements of the storyline. The plot ended up being based upon the students desire to cross the Malawi border, despite not being allowed through via border control. There was a worrying but very entertaining encounter with some crocodiles when using the river to enter Malawi. This led to the group leader, Becky, having to save them but she got thrown into border control prison where she met some scary characters. The students created a plan to save Becky which involved their rendition of the YMCA. Becky is saved and everyone celebrates with a favourite Tanzanian song, Tomogeli.

After many rehearsals and much planning, both the English and Tanzanian students performed the play "Becky says no" to all of the teachers and students at Lutengano. Everybody found the play hilarious and very entertaining. The final programmed day was ended with a lovely meal prepared by the mamas at Lutengano.


Beth Young

Nane Nane day

On the 8th of August we awoke bright and early at 6:00am to begin our 2-hour journey to Mbeya for the Nane Nane festival. The Nane Nane festival is an annual harvest festival held in Mbeya, the southern highland region of Tanzania. We were all pretty apprehensive as it was the link first visit to the festival so none knew what to expect! The journey was long and most of us slept.

Upon arriving at the festival we went through the entrance gates after getting our tickets. At first the festival seemed very agricultural but there were numerous things to do throughout the day. We were taught how to grow avacados (parachichi), a good skill to learn for Imani, perhaps less important for us to learn? There were lots of animals, a snake which a few people were brave enough to hold and even a miniature zoo – Some students paid TSH 2,000 to enter the zoo and see lions in small cages, which was a bit upsetting to see. Me and a few others did not go into the zoo!

A couple of students were not feeling too good, so Ian, one of the group leaders bought a couple of sun-hats for them to wear (not so stylish, but practical!) We later had food and as predicted took around 2-hours (Tanzanian times). After food we took some time to look around the market, there were stalls selling all kinds of handmade goods.

Each year at the Nane Nane festival there is a guest of honour invited to the festival, this year it was the prime minister of Tanzania- Kassim Majaliwa. During the day Julia & Amy's groups had quite a celebrity moment as they actually met with him! The Tanzanians were full of pride to introduce the groups to their prime minister!

The festival began to get busier the longer we had stayed. Time was against us so we finally had to leave for our long journey back to the bible centre. We were all worn out by this point and everybody was looking forward for some rest!


Becca J

A fun-filled paint, music and BBQ day!

After a project visit to Katumba II by myself, Becca and Amy, an idea was born to paint pictures in the dining hall and physio room for the children of Katumba II to brighten their school day. The search for paint was quite a challenge, as colours are not in great supply in Rungwe, but never the less, after a two day search spend persevering, the paint was found. We all arrived early at Katumba II on Lulu our faithful old bus driven by our driver (Laticko) now named 'Number 25'.

Everyone set off drawing and painting and all the students and leaders where engrossed in their art work. Hands were used where paint brushes where in short supply and even a nearby tree was utilized for painting small artwork. There was even time to paint the Paper Technology items we had been working on over the past weeks.

The group of Tanzumbrian artists were watched by a small crowed of Katumba II children, who seemed delighted by what was happening. Kalyoto, head of Katumba II said that some days he was not happy, but "today I feel very happy".

It was soon time to wash up and pack away and to stand back and admire our handy work, I have to say that the flower next to the physio bed was practically good, even if I do say so myself lol, but to be truthful they were all very good.

Next it was time for the music to start, the hall filled with Katumba II and English students and members of RCCL and the Makandana dance group. Food was served, pop was drank and before long everyone was dancing as the Makandana dance group struck up a tune or two, even the Tanzumbrians took to the stage and gave the watching crowed a sample of our music. Before long it was time to go I bid a sad farewell to the staff and children of Katumba II, who I had grown fond of over my days spent there this visit and headed off to Ivan's for the RCCL BBQ!

There was music blaring from the speakers, women cooking everywhere and a local man cooking meat ready to serve! Students were ushered in to seats and a selection of drinks were made available. Before long, everyone had had their fill of the amazing food, partically excited about the pork being cooked, and began to join in dances in the courtyard! The end of the night was filled with the students visiting Agy's (Ivan's wife) shop and filling up on sweets before the drive home on Lulu.