Arusha Project

Day 2: Children for Children’s Future
June 20, 2007, 9:36 am
Filed under: Abroad Program, Uncategorized

Our volunteers have jumped into their placements and are loving their work, rapidly learning survival Kiswahili and adapting to the time change quite impressively. Yesterday we made our first dala dala (that’s what the vans used for transportation are called here) run to drop off volunteers at their respective placements throughout Arusha. I followed Niki to her English class today to get a glimpse of what she does at Children for Children’s Future (CCF), a decade old school dedicated to counseling and educating high risk children and youth. As we walked down the dirt road, one of Niki’s students ran up to us grinning, reached for her extra bag of teaching materials and insisted on carrying it into the school for her.

School door

A few minutes later, the soccer ball Niki bought yesterday to replace the existing ball made of rubber bands was found and the small cement school yard turned into a big free for all game with all eyes fixed excitedly on the ball. After Chris, the translator and teacher for the few older boys, arrived, the class got started. Children jumped over each other to draw their hands and names on big pieces of paper that would cover the walls, wrote out Kiswahili translations to simple English words on the blackboard and clamored insistently in front of my lens.

Student writing on the chalkboard

Patiently Niki worked through the language barrier, and brought the children from an excited and slightly disorderly bunch into more than less cohesive group testing simple English conversations, singing “head, shoulders, knees and toes…”, and acting out action words such as dancing, running, clapping etc. They learn fast and seem to want to learn more than anything.

Children dancing in class



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