Salawe Early Childhood Development Centre, Tanzania 2014/15

Update January 2015

The Salawe Early Childhood Development Centre is now built!

During two expeditions, over one hundred Raleigh volunteers worked alongside partner organisation Save the Children, local “fundi’s” (skilled workers,) and community members to transform a disused piece of land into a wonderful, inspiring, welcoming place for pre-school children to learn and grow.

The final phase team and the village elders celebrate the opening of the centre, right.

During this final phase, the venturers rose at dawn, working hard to cover the walls with educational, colourful designs, drawing on their own inspirational and creative ideas as well as those of the previous two groups.

The ECD now stands as a beacon on the crossroads of Salawe to represent the opportunities children here now have in education working towards the millennium development goal of universal primary education for all.

Thank you to The Myles Trust for the continued support of our work. As a result of your support in Salawe Tanzania, children will be able to receive pre-educational support for the very first time, ensuring that they are more likely to complete their education which will contribute to the wider goal of helping to end poverty.

Update September 2014

The Myles Trust - Early Childhood Development Centre TanzaniaThe teams in Tanzania have been working hard over the past month or so and have dug the foundations and laid the brick work for the centre with the help of the local Fundi’s (workmen). The volunteers will be leaving to come back to the UK shortly, but due to the nature of the work to be done, the building of the centre will continue in their absence with the local Fundi’s completing the roofing and plumbing. The next expedition can look forward to working with the local community to complete the final touches such as plastering and decoration – with the final opening planned for early next year.

The Myles Trust has agreed to fund the building of an Early Childhood Development Centre in Salawe in the Songambelle Village of Tanzania between the summer and autumn 2014.

Worldwide, an estimated 200 million children under the age of 5 fail to meet developmental potential, which is often attributed to poverty, inadequate learning opportunities, and nutritional deficiencies. Early Childhood Development refers to a child’s physical, social, emotional, linguistic, and cognitive well-being before the age of 8, and is proven to be one of the most cost effective of interventions. Through receiving good quality early childhood development, children are less likely to drop out of school and on average earn more in later life.

The Myles Trust - Early Childhood Development Centre TanzaniaTanzania’s pre-primary education policy was developed in 1995 as part of the Government’s broader Education and Training Policy. It outlines the importance of children being provided with pre-education skills such as literacy and numeracy before beginning their primary education, however most existing preschools are in urban settings and therefore too far away for children living in the rural communities to attend. As a result of this, 65% of Tanzanian children enter primary school with no formal early learning experience.

Raleigh International wants to provide pre-education centres known as Early Childhood Development Centres (ECD Centre) for rural and vulnerable communities, reaching the children and families who need it most. In these communities, the centres are not simply preschools, but safe havens for the most vulnerable children who may be lacking other basic amenities including food and nutrition, which directly impacts a child’s development.

An ECD Centre is a basic building often containing classrooms, teachers’ offices, a kitchen and toilets. The Centres fall under village government management, with support from the District Council, ensuring that the project is sustainable and is accepted and used by the local community. Although much effort has already been made by communities by donating buildings to serve as pre-educational facilities, many of them are in a state of disrepair, and not safe or fit for purpose due to a lack of essential facilities including toilets, educational materials, and safe recreational facilities.

Raleigh and Save the Children have identified Salawe as a priority area to support with the construction of an Early Childhood Development Centre. Save the Children Tanzania, run world-class programmes to save children’s lives and challenge world leaders to keep their promises to give children a brighter future. Although in partnership, it is Raleigh who will be managing the project in terms of construction, volunteer coordination, reporting, and budget management. The groups will also be working alongside Save The Children to continue their work in the community to ensure acceptance of the centre after Raleigh leave.

There will be some photos when they are available.

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