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This just in: the official report and photo from an October, 2011, gathering in Denver of 8 TEAA-ers - mostly from Colorado but from as far away as Atlanta and Whidbey Island (WA).   The Tanzanian ambassador to the U.S. was present at this Friends of Tanzania event and spent quality time with our gang. See the  Report .

Frequent TEAA school-visitor Ed Schmidt, having made his sixth odd-numbered-year East Africa trip of the milennium, has been busy following up with several schools he saw for the first time this past June in Western Kenya, near Bungoma and Malaba. He writes:

"My former student Enoch Nandokha was able to borrow/rent a car from his neighbor. We made a swing through the north to Toloso, then west through the countryside to Bishop Sulumeti, Kamuriai, and Amagoro Girls. The next day we returned to Amagoro to take some photos, and visited Kocholya, Bungoma Baptist Girls, and Namachanja."

All these schools had been recommended to him. One, Amagoro Girls, has now received a grant. "I was impressed by the work the principal is doing and she has been the most consistent at communicating by email." Another grant has been made to Mukuyu, a school near Migori in the southwest that Ed started visiting in 2005, has received some assistance from us before and was visited by TEAA-ers during the recent 50th reunion trip.
Ed is not the only Edgar! There is now a baby Edgar recently born to the wife of the principal of Bishop Tarantino College, a school in Lira in the north of Uganda that TEAA has assisted, through Ed's efforts. That's the new Edgar in the photo.
Amagoro Girls, a school new to us, is a bit east of Malaba, Kenya and was "found" by Ed Schmidt. The principal writes: "On behalf of the this school community, the B.O.G, P.T.A, teachers and students, I wish to sincerely thank your organisation for your donation to our school. Through your good gesture, we were able to purchase 96 mathematics text books. This has boosted the resources in our maths department. We hope the performance of the girls in maths will improve. Do convey our deep appreciation to madam Ruth of Computers for Africa who introduced us to you. Thank you again. Yours sincerely, Onyango D.A., Principal/B.O.G. Secretary"
JULY 2011
"Warm greetings" from Olive and Albert, the management team at St. Bernard's College Kiswera, whose Board directs them to "convey, on behalf of the whole school, their excitement, joy and gratitude for the piped water project which has been successfully completed and has revolutionized the lives of the students. It has greatly enhanced their comfort, discipline and academic performance. It is a great landmark! We wish also to sincerely thank all members of TEAA for the five new computers and for all the precious previous grants. Best regards to the TEAA team that visited us."

Symbolic turn-on for 5 TEAA-ers at St. Bernard's, Kiswera in Uganda, during EA-11, our 50th anniversary tour. Betty Castor, Sam Bell, Pat Gill, Nola Stover and Pat Colby were the visitors. That's Betty with students in the photo. She writes: "As usual, Olive and Albert greeted us heartily and thanked us profusely for TEAA's past support. They have also received the recent gift of five computers which arrived shortly before our visit. The highlight of the trip was a ceremonial trip up to the water tank where we turned the tap providing running water for the school compound. It's hard to describe the exciting atmosphere as the students, teachers and even the engineer participated in this wonderful moment. The piped water project relieves the students, especially the girls, from trekking down the hill to carry water to the school. The leadership is so dedicated to the legacy of St. Bernard's that it is truly inspirational to help their mission. They have more needs, of course. However, TEAA members should appreciate the help we have provided in the past. The school is very grateful."

2-story library building, under construction at MacKay College near Kampala, will also
house the TEAA computer lab and at least one classroom. Photo is from Ed Schmidt.

Click pic for
dancing at MacKay,
during TEAA visit
June, 2011.
After TEAA visit to Notre Dame Academy, Njiro, near Arusha, Tanzania, Sister Shaija wrote: "Four of the TEAA members visited our school. I was very happy to meet Mr. Schmidt and the other three members. They were so good and relaxed. We were on holiday when they visited, but even then we had all the form four students and some form two students here for some extra classes during the holidays. I am working hard for the first batch of my form four students that they may do well. Thanks a million for the text books you have helped me to get. Really you have made it easy for the teachers and students. Please accept my gratitude for each one of you."
JUNE 2011
"The Teacher," by now the traditional TEAA logo, adorns the front of the new yellow 2011 TEAA T-shirt, available from Brooks (goddard@rcn.com) at the upcoming NY-11 and EA-11 events. Also before and after them. The back has a map of Africa and a list of all our 60s schools.

"I have exciting news to share," writes Sophia Klumpp, Managing Director of Uganda-based AFRIpads Ltd., producer of washable reusable feminine hygiene pads now subsidized by TEAA at some schools where we provide academic items. A few days ago she conducted a promotional session "at Bishop Tarantino College in Lira and had a wonderful experience. The girls were very enthusiastic about the product... About a dozen of the girls had received AFRIpads last year [in a program put on] annually by the U.S. Peace Corps Volunteers. They shared their positive feedback with their peers, and in the end we sold 82 kits on the spot!... The girls all understand that TEAA is supporting them by making the pads available at a very affordable price, and they are looking forward to the seeing and thanking the visitors in a few short weeks! Thanks so much to TEAA-er Gene Child for pushing the pads initiative forward and enabling us to offer this program at TEAA's other partner schools. We're delighted!"   more 
Principal and TEAA friend Okunya Milton is "attending a workshop on lesson study, a Japanese teaching methodology currently being piloted in Kenya. I'm amazed at how teaching can be very fulfilling with right attitude and appropriate technology. Many things we take for granted really can make a lot of difference... This evening I will be speaking to department heads from schools in Kisii area and I have decided to talk on what in my opinion are the pillars of success."

More from Okunya: "On Friday (July 22) I will be speaking at a function meant to inspire girls in our district to continue with education despite the odds."

14 permanent tables are now "fixed into 14 classrooms' floors so that they remain there forever," at Moringe Sokoine SS, writes Headmaster Kwayu. Made of "strong metal bars and sheets and painted sky blue," the tables are the result of a special TEAA grant in recognition of excellent results on the 2010 form 4 national exams and are both a convenience and morale booster. "Hope you will be able to see the tables when you come to our school. Asante sana, mwalimu."

Click red box for excellent  photo  of an assembly at Iceme, taken by TEAA partner AFRIpads.
MAY 2011
TEAA is funding AFRIpads, a feminine hygiene product for female students, at several high schools in Uganda. Participants will pay 1/4 of the cost. The project is motivated by educational considerations, but because the pads are washable, reusable and manufactured in Uganda the project also has hygienic, ecological and economic benefits.    more 
 EA-11 , our latest Odyssey, starts in late June with schools visits and conferences in all three TEAA countries. Brooks Goddard will lead a troupe of 24. In a side-trip, Ed Schmidt will go to schools in/near Bungoma and Malaba in western Kenya, possibly including a meeting with Butonge (see →). From A.C.Butonge High (Sirisia, near Bungoma, Kenya): "Hi Henry! I acknowledge that the money you sent to us has reached our account. Thank you so much and I promise that we will purchase the books as soon as possible. Pass my greetings to the entire TEAA group. Thank you.     Vincent Wekesa, Principal."
31 Microscopes are packed and moving! ...to TEAA-assisted schools in and near Arusha, Tanzania. Originating at Michigan State University, they made a successful rendezvous on the East Coast with computers from World Computer Exchange who agreed to add them to our pallets and ship them onward across the big waters to Dar es Salaam. There teachers from Moringe Sokoine and St. Joseph Ngarenaro will supervise the retrieval and further movement of these microscopes, accompanied by 38 P4-based computers, inland to their respective schools. TEAA-er Leal Dickson worked with his former student, Prof. John Merrill of MSU's Microbiology and Molecular Genetics Dept., to make this donation happen. Here is a message to Leal from the principal of Moringe Sokoine:

"Dear Leal and Audrey Dickson,     Shikamooni wote. Greetings from Moringe Sokoine Secondary School Monduli, Tanzania. My name is Ndesamburo Kwayu, a teacher and a head of school at MSSS, Monduli. Through Mr. Henry of the TEAA , I have come to know you!! I don't know you by face, but through your experience in Tanganyika/Tanzania as teachers at Nyakato SS in Bukoba, and obviously as people who would want to help others across thousands of miles across oceans and continents thus you have decided to extend your giving hands/hearts to schools under TEAA in our area. Thank you so much for the MICROSCOPES!!! ...to help uplift the education of our students and in so doing uplifting Tanzania's development through education. We are told that the shipment process is on very good stage. May the Lord guide and bless you and your efforts abundantly. We will always remember your support to the needy. Asanteni sana.     Sincerely yours, Ndesamburo Kwayu."
APRIL 2011
Water supply project at St. Bernard's, Kiswera (near Masaka, Uganda) is now fully funded thanks to Betty Castor, Sam Bell and Betty's friend Lorna Gregory.
TEAA rep Peter Indalo writes from near Migori, Kenya: "The rains have finally come and we have distributed nearly all the 600,000 tree seedlings that we had." This is not a typo. Peter's community services activities include a large, well organized project that really is capable of producting 3/5 of a million tree seedlings. "It is interesting that the rains only came to this part of the country while Kenya on the whole is still very dry. We have also planted crops and most people are busy weeding. The cost of fuel is extremely high pushing prices of all commodities up. People are in arms against the government." What Peter gently calls "commodities" includes food. Exacerbating the problem has been the global-warming-induced heat and drought in Russia, leading to an export ban there which has affected global food markets. TEAA-ers Leal and Audrey Dickson are back from Nyakato Secondary in Bukoba, Tanzania, bringing warm greetings from the staff after the first TEAA visit there in almost four years. There was a ceremony- and performance-filled morning and then, "after lunch we toured buildings and especially labs and the library. Josephat, our local representative was there for all this. The next day we went back to have a closer look at the items we have supplied and for me to meet with (and teach would you believe?) a 5th form chemistry class... Audrey and I came away concluding that our help has made a clear difference... Our most effective contribution - the 800+ textbooks TEAA has supplied - has had a major impact." The school finished in the top 10% regionally on the most recent national exams. See trip page for  more .
Audiotapes from the
Birth of an Organization:
TEA & TEEA Alumni
meet in Washington, DC, in 2001,
9 days after "9/11."

1st control bar features Frank Ballance and then Ed Schmidt.
2nd: Emilee Cantieri and Judith Lindfors
3rd: Brooks Goddard

Wait for loading to finish.
Start: Click the right-pointing triangle (2nd icon).
Stop: Click the vertical bars that replace the triangle.

Girls took 5 of the top 6 positions in Tororo District on the Uganda Certificate of Education examinations. Three of them were from Tororo Girls School, where TEAA has assisted.  more 

Exam Results from principals.

Election and school are coming soon in Uganda:   Fawn Cousens, TEAA-er and TEAA representative to Uganda schools writes that Kampala traffic is getting serious as schools open and the presidential election draws near. Here are her two messages and one from Shelby Lewis, followed by background on the race.

[Fawn, Feb 14]     Hi Henry     Yesterday everyone was in town in a vehicle as they were getting their children who are starting secondary school organized. Took me 2 hours in mostly stop little-go traffic to accomplish my usual 11 minute trip home. Election is Friday but they have not yet announced what days will be a public holiday. Possibly Thursday and Friday so that people can travel home to vote. Seems they are now finding lots of duplicate names on the registers - I am assuming that the ink you dip your finger in will be washable

[Fawn, Feb 15]     Found out that the cause of the jam was Besigye campaigning for votes on Kampala Road at the start of the evening rush hour. Notice went out today that Friday will be a public holiday and the office have given advice - stock up with food and water, charge phone and buy air time, etc. Seems the UK have an election monitoring team and the opposition have 95,000 observers to be at each and every polling station. I will keep you informed...

[Shelby, Feb 15]     Hi Henry,     This is indeed what traffic is like in Uganda. The trip from Kampala to Entebbe can take up to 2-3 hrs during rush hour. I departed Uganda on November 25th, 2010, "Nominations Day" in all districts and the processions of candidates and their followers made my trip from Tororo to Entebbe much longer than I ever imagined it could possibly be. The population has quadrupled since the 1960s and the transportation system has not kept up with the growth.    shelby

background from NewsAhead

President Yoweri Museveni ... already Africa's longest-serving leader, will try to extend his 25-year rule by five years on Feb 18. His main challenger is Kizza Besigye [who] ran against him in 2006..... The opposition wants the Electoral Commission reformed to make it independent ... The country's last elections in 2006 were marred by violence.

The former cattle herder and student activist, who seized power on 26 Jan 1986, is standing on his record: Museveni is widely credited with returning stability and economic vitality to an East African nation ravaged by dictatorship and civil wars in the 1970s and early 1980s. Many see his early achievements as overshadowed in recent years by his determination to hang on to power. His share of the vote has dwindled with each of the recent elections, and he faces the stiffest challenge yet if there is no boycott and the opposition coalition holds together.

Exam Results from Principals

Continued progress: Two girls at Bishop Tarantino College in Lira, Uganda, passed in grade one (top 8%) on the just released 2010
UCE (Uganda Certificate of Education). Headmaster Maxwell Engola writes:

"Dear Ed,   I appreciate all you endeavors to improve performance among our girls. Your support has a great impact on the results. We have always had an annual improvement. The girls have performed quite a bit better than last time. At least this year we have got 2 girls passing in grade one and as usual a great improvement in Math and science. We still have alot though to do in sciences. Our regards and appreciation to all members of TEAA.     Maxwell"

Dramatic improvement: We have just received exciting news of academic achievement at Moringe Sokoine Secondary in Monduli, Tanzania:

"Dear Mr. Henry. Shikamoo Mwalimu. Greetings from our warm summers in Monduli. Hope the winter is going away in your area. We are doing very well and are very busy at the beginning of the year, recruiting new form one students, administering national form six examinations, teaching forms one through five, attending parents, etc.

"We are proud to announce to you that the TEAA support to Moringe Sokoine SS has had an impact on our peformance in the national form four results, mostly in the field of maths and sciences. The school is number one in the district - having 23 secondary schools, 9th out of 134 secondary schools in Arusha region and position 114 out of 3,196 secondary schools in Tanzania."

These results - to a position in the top 4% nationwide - are a remarkable improvement from the preceding year, with 5 students in the top category (Division I) vs. none in 2009 or 2008, as well as 11 in the next category vs 6 and 0 in the preceding years.

"Once again we thank you so much as we see science and maths students do well in the exams. Greet our friends in the TEAA. Sincerely, Kwayu."