Newsletter #7
July 2002
Published by:
Ed Schmidt
7307 Lindbergh Drive
St. Louis, MO 63117
314-647-1608
eschmidt1@mindspring.com

Costs for the newsletter have been met by voluntary contributions, and contributions are still being accepted. Please do not send additional funds if you have already contributed.

TEA/TEEA members are invited to submit articles and news items to the newsletter. Submission by disk or email preferred, but typed or handwritten is ok, too. Length should be modest and generally not exceed two pages, single spaced. Content should reflect current or past African experiences or research.

In this issue: The focus of this issue is the upcoming reunion/conference of TEAA in East Africa in June 2003. We begin with Bob Maxon's update on East Africa in the 40 years since the start of TEA. This is followed by Brooks Goddard's report on reunion plans, suggestions and instructions. Then, Frank Ballance lays out his thoughts on how we might interact with the EA governments, and Bob Maxon gives his personal experiences and reflections on personal security gleaned from his June, 2002 trip to Kenya. Focus items conclude with information about two additional conferences in East Africa next summer. The order of articles in this newsletter is as follows:


Contents

Decades of Change for East Africa
Bob Maxon

East Africa and its people have experienced some momentous, and in many ways unforeseen, changes during the four decades that have transpired since the arrival of the first TEA volunteers in the region in 1961. Obviously the international scene has changed considerably with the end of the cold war and the dawn of the era of globalization, and the East African countries have been profoundly influenced by these changes as well as internal political and economic conditions.

At the start of the 1960s, Britain's East African colonies were rapidly approaching independence, termed by some the region's first liberation. Tanganyika would be first in 1961, with Uganda following in 1962 and Kenya and Zanzibar in December 1963. The timing reflected the intense desire felt by the African majority in the colonial territories for uhuru and the British wish to liquidate its East African empire as rapidly as possible. But the timing also reflected the colonial power's views of the potential political stability of the independent states and the degree to which British interests, material and political, could be maintained after independence. Thus Tanganyika, which was regarded as the most politically stable and united of the East African colonies on the eve of independence as well as being led by the most pro-western of nationalist leaders, was first to uhuru. Uganda, despite ethnic and political divisions, inherited the strongest economy in the region. Kenya and Zanzibar moved to independence later than these two as both were seen by the colonial ruler as riven by racial and ethnic divisions that promoted political instability, threatened national unity and economic viability, and encouraged political radicalism. Kenya, in particular, was viewed as on the verge of economic collapse, having the potential for violent conflict, and likely to come under the control of radicals who would move the independent state to the communist side in the cold war. For example, in presenting his proposals for a new constitution to the British cabinet in mid-1962, then Secretary of State for the Colonies Reginald Maudling informed his colleagues that the best the British could hope for was sufficient stability to allow for the orderly withdrawal of Kenya's European settlers. He told the cabinet that he did not anticipate that any government of independent Kenya would be pro-western in the way that Tanganyika and Uganda were likely to become.

As we know, the latter prediction badly missed the mark. Kenya, under Jomo Kenyatta, became the bastion of western influence in East Africa. Foreign investment was encouraged, potential radicals eliminated from government, and Kenya, under Kenyatta and his successor Daniel arap Moi, was firmly in the non-communist camp. So much so that during the 1960s and 1970s, Kenya was viewed by left-wing observers as one of Africa's most neo-colonial states. Tanganyika (after 1964 Tanzania), by contrast, moved dramatically away from the inherited political and economic structures in the 1960s and 1970s. The adoption of the socialist ujamaa policy produced disastrous economic consequences and won Tanzania few friends among the major western powers. Nor did Tanzanian foreign policy, marked by strong opposition to apartheid in South Africa, Rhodesia's UDI, and the Viet Nam War, endear itself to Britain and the United States. Uganda was moving in a similar direction, but the Amin coup of 1971 ushered in more than a decade of political violence and economic disaster for the nation and its people. Kenya's economy, marked by a high annual growth rate, expanding exports, and the emergence of tourism as a major foreign exchange earner, prospered in the two decades following independence as East Africa's strongest.

Since the 1980s, however, the situation sketched out above has undergone further change. By the end of that decade, East Africa was entering what has been termed its "second liberation." Tanzania had moved away from the ujamaa policies and adopted multi-partyism while attempting to foster renewed economic growth in an era characterized by the application of structural adjustment policies advocated by the World Bank and IMF. The end of the cold war in the 1990s and the coming of majority rule in Zimbabwe and South Africa removed major reasons for political division with the now dominant capitalist western bloc. Uganda had by the same time begun the long and difficult task of recovery from the years of strife and economic disaster. Under President Museveni, Uganda became, by the start of the new century, an example of economic progress based upon the prescriptions of the World Bank and donor nations. Uganda is recognized for having dealt more effectively with the health crisis caused by the spread of AIDS than its neighbors. Despite his past radical views and less than enthusiastic support for democracy, President Museveni was regarded by the US and other western European nations as East Africa's most effective leader. By the same time, Kenya had not only lost its economic momentum but its President Moi was widely regarded in the west as one of Africa's most corrupt and despotic leaders. The end of the cold war as well as changes in the world economy (e.g. rises in petroleum prices), the AIDS pandemic, and continued domestic mismanagement had negative impacts on Kenya's economic performance. For much of the past decade, the IMF, the World Bank and major donor nations have suspended economic aid to Kenya. High levels of corruption and "ethnic clashes" as well as other factors in the early 1990s served to cut tourist visits. Thus Kenya recorded a negative economic growth rate of 0.2% in 2000. This was a marked contrast to the so-called "golden era" of the 1960s and 1970s. At the start of the new millennium it was Uganda and Tanzania, rather than Kenya, whose economies were recording annual GDP growth rates in excess of 5%.

While there is much that is simplistic about this short summary, it cannot be denied that East Africa has been and remains a region marked by changing fortunes. The past forty years have seen the people of the region confront many challenges, some more successfully than others. It is this history, among other factors such as its natural beauty and the warmth of its inhabitants, which makes East Africa an area of interest and a continuing source of attraction to many of us.

Kampala 03 Will Be
Brooks Goddard

Plans are moving forward for Kampala 03 Reunion which will be composed of the Conference at Makerere on Secondary School Education, a Walimu Bus Tour, the Arusha Conference on Topics in Secondary Education, the Kenyatta University Conference on the Schools, self-guided tours of former schools and the countryside, and wild life safaris. The purposes of K03 include information gathering, discussion of educational and national topics, renewal of friendships, and focusing on future missions. I have confirmation from Makerere for a start date of June 9, 2003 (arrive earlier); the anticipated end of the formal reunion will be June 20. At the same time, it appears that we can be building the groundwork for other folks to go to EA in 2004 and onwards.

Some logistics as I currently see them. Airfare routing and booking will be up to you; please plan to arrive in Kampala no later than Sunday, June 8. I can give some guidance in this area, but since there has not been much interest in a group booking, I haven't seen a need to investigate further. We plan to house ourselves at the Namirembe Guest House in Kampala (already reserved) which is very reasonably priced. I have suggested folks plan on budgeting $75 a day per person for room and meals for the 12 days of the planned time; I think the Walimu Bus transport will cost about $200 per person. I shall ask for a $400 deposit towards the anticipated $1200 expense of the 12-day formal section in November, 2002.

Renting cars is expensive; you might think about pairing up with others to visit former schools and driving about. A safari will cost $150-200 per person per day. We want to have a reunion review at the end of our formal program, and then you will be free to do as you wish. There are plenty of safari possibilities, obviously. I really would like to know the sense of the group here; expenses can be best controlled by getting into groups of 6-8. Variables include point of departure (Nairobi, Arusha, or Kampala), number of days, level of luxury. TEAAr Mike Rainy and his wife Judy have several good ideas. TEAAr Ed Williams has contacts in Kenya. Please advise me as to whether you want me to set some possibilities up or whether you'd like to make safari arrangements yourself.

I have been in correspondence with several people well-placed to give us a sense of how things have changed over 40 years. Gordon McGregor tells me that education is a value throughout Uganda and that he sees improvement in conditions at Makerere and generally each time he returns. He says that school conditions are variable and crowded and that the traffic has increased. Will Jones says that Nairobi isn't as pleasant as it used to be and with precautions reasonably safe. The chief issue is trying to get a picture of secondary school education now. The student numbers and schools have increased 20-fold but building has not kept pace. The nice, tidy school compounds we remember have vanished. Many schools are private; quality is uneven. We are building a very strong base of contacts in Kampala: TEAAr Fawn Cousens, Charles Wabwire and Kate Parry (UK TEA) at Makerere's School of Education. I hope we can develop similar contacts for Kenya and Tanzania. While there are no service projects emanating from K03, I am starting a list of worthy possibilities: The Pan-Africa Reading conference in August [see separate newsletter entry], ACCES project in Kakamega, the Agard proposal for Uganda, Kate Parry's Kitengesa library, and Global Volunteers. Habitat for Humanity is in all three countries. As nearly as I can determine, there is NO list of general projects either by category or country. The economic realities of globalization (or whatever you wish to call it) have reduced the scale to individual projects. We should certainly be thinking about bringing books and some kinds of supplies with us.

I am certain that this trip will provide many options and possibilities; it will not be a panacea for all the complicated emotional, psychological, and spiritual circumstances that led us originally to East Africa or emerged from our years there. For this particular point, I repeat my suggestion to read the essay "Arbitrage" by Andre Aciman which appeared in a New Yorker and is in his book, False Papers. I heartily recommend that you go out right now a nd buy either the Lonely Planet guide to East Africa (2000) or the Footsteps East Africa Handbook (2002). Let's face it, we are going to be tourists (and yet with a difference) this trip. Both books are also useful for bringing you up to speed on social and political histories/conditions; each book addresses all the usual issues. I also recommend that you write your former school and tell them that you're coming and ask how you can help (I suggest that you do not put stamps on the envelope but take the envelope to a post office for metered postage - that way someone will not filch the envelope for the USA stamps). Whatever, this trip is going to be fun and meaningful.

I would appreciate hearing from all the folks who are now giving strong consideration to K03: A declaration of intent (I crave explicitness), responses to the above, and a short bio (what you have done, what your specific skills are, what you hope to gain from K03. Please contact me directly:

Brooks Goddard
59 Otis St, Needham, MA 02492
781-444-5988,
goddard@rcn.com

Coordinating with the East African Governments
Frank Ballance

[From the editor:] Frank Ballance reports that he has visited each of the embassies in DC to inform them of our plans. The Ugandan and Kenyan ambassadors have asked him to write a letter for them to forward to their respective presidents informing them of our trip and seeking their support for our efforts. The Tanzanian amabassador has recently returned to Tanzania, but Frank expects a similar procedure to be followed there. Frank reports that the ambassadors like the idea of a conference at the main university, and they like the plan for a bus trip. He hopes to enlist the ambassadors' support with the Ministries of Education, noting that the support of the Ambassador and Ministry of Education will be invaluable in facilitating the creation of an educational partnership and developing a realistic plan for action and implementing strategy." Frank also asks assistance in our efforts to meet our old students to get a partnership in motion. In addition, we seek collaboration with current educators, both at the universities and at our old schools. Our goal is to educate ourselves so that we can " create a collaborative mechanism to define our mission and work closely with those at the local level to achieve defined objectives in assisting education (In East Africa)."

Following is some of the information that Frank hopes to communicate to the presidents. If you have additional ideas or comments, you can address them to Frank

Frank C. Ballance
2009 Columbia Rd NW
Washington DC 20009-1310
H: 202-667-0510, W: 202-667-0500
fballance@aol.com

From Frank Ballance:

Teachers for East Africa (TEA) was born 40 years ago, with leadership from President John F. Kennedy, President Julius Nyerere, Karl Bigelow of Teachers College, Columbia University, and J. Freeman Butts. From 1961 to1971 TEA provided more than 850 teachers for East African secondary schools and teacher training colleges, a crucial decade in which the three countries became independent. As enthusiastic and dedicated young teachers, we were eager to assist our students become productive, responsible leaders in their countries. Forty years after the first TEA group left for Africa, in September, 2001, just ten days after the horrific events of September 11, we held our 40th anniversary reunion in Washington to commemorate our service as Teachers for East Africa. Our reunion rekindled our sense of accomplishment and purpose. We also found a deep common interest in applying our knowledge and forty years of experience in a renewed program to assist secondary education in East Africa. The task of educating a new generation of African students has never been more important, or more complex.

If we are to be of assistance in this effort, we think it should be in partnership with our former students and colleagues, and those teachers and educators now responsible for secondary education. In fact, our former students are now the current generation of leaders and parents (and grandparents - ed.) in East Africa. With each group drawing on their diverse life experiences, we hope we can create a unique partnership to strengthen secondary education.

The TEA Alumni (TEAA) have organized as an informal association, with a major focus on secondary education in East Africa. For the immediate future we are undertaking two related initiatives:

  1. To plan and organize a second TEAA gathering, tentatively set for June 2003, in East Africa, beginning at Makerere University (which many of us attended in preparation for our teaching assignments) and traveling to our old schools in Uganda, Kenya, and Tanzania. We intend to organize a bus caravan to visit schools, find former students and colleagues, and educate ourselves on education and related developments in East Africa. We are planning a series of educational conferences in each of the three countries, in collaboration with the Ministries of Education, the universities, former students, public officials, and friends of education. This will lay the groundwork for the TEAA educational partnership with counterparts from the three countries.
  2. To develop and implement a realistic and feasible plan for assisting in strengthening secondary education in East Africa and a renewed educational partnership, in collaboration with the Ministry(s) of Education, educational institutions, communities, and those involved in education as teachers, parents, and students.

These are large tasks, while our resources as retired teachers are quite limited. The TEAA partnership is not an aid program.Therefore we must consider and choose carefully what activities we should undertake through the TEAA partnership with former students and others as the key to successful planning and implementation. For these initiatives to succeed, the active involvement of the governments of the three countries is vital. We believe the formation of such a partnership can create a powerful synergy on behalf of secondary education.

Notes on ideas for TEAA to assist secondary education in East Africa

  1. TEAA is a low budget organization, powered by voluntary effort. These are strengths, not weaknesses.
  2. Focus on what is do-able and important: how to define this.
  3. Key is participation with our former students and colleagues: a joint effort, and cooperative and mutually agreed activities.
  4. Links back to US: our communities (adopt a school, or town), Congress (let Congress know we are interested and following what they do.) Send them a monthly newsletter. A pressure group to focus on improving E.A. education. Keep in touch with AID and World Bank.
  5. Keep in touch with universities in EA, and foster links with local universities. Assist students enrolled in US universities (usually at the graduate level).
  6. Individuals can serve as contact point for EA students or visitors when visiting the US or UK: a family away from home.
  7. Consider incorporating, so we can receive grants for specific programs. Can be an implementing organization, but not lose our voluntary character.
  8. Facilitate individual TEAArs to go back to East Africa for specific projects.
  9. Develop and use TEAA website as means of communication and contact with EA schools; could put on lesson plans that supplement classroom work. Resource Center for EA schools.
  10. Choose several critical areas for special attention and focus:
    • Science and maths education
    • AIDS education and prevention
    • Civil society development: put students and teachers in touch with civil society organizations and ideas
    • Education for economic growth: basic economics and employment creation

Security in Kenya
Bob Maxon

During my June 2002 visit to Kenya, it was quickly apparent to me that the question of personal security looms much larger in the minds of Kenyans than on past visits. My taxi driver from the airport, my former soccer teammate, took me to his apartment for some breakfast, as has been his custom on my previous visits. He has lived in the same lower middle class apartment building in Nairobi South C for almost forty years, but now in addition to steel grates on the doors, each landing in the building has been cordoned off by a steel door and heavy metal pillars. I was told that the residents installed these after too many break-ins and robberies. This was definitely a change from the past! Moreover, when I met an academic colleague now holding a high ranking civil service position for lunch that same day, almost the first words out of his mouth were "Bob, be careful where you go; things are not as safe as in the past." Specifically, he advised me to stay out of the "Eastlands" portion of Nairobi as well as those portions of downtown Nairobi that are often viewed as slum areas (e.g. River Road and its environs such as Nyama Kima). I had often gone to those areas on foot on past trips, but I followed my friend's advice. I did a great deal of walking in the downtown area over several days, however, and I noted no particular concerns for my security. During the course of these few days, I was struck by how few wazungu I saw on the downtown streets while all indications are that the number of western tourists has begun to increase over the past year. This is also a reflection of the security situation.

My trip to western Kenya was not any different than past ones, on the other hand. I drove a rental car to Eldoret and Moi University (20 miles to the southeast of the city). I also drove to Kisumu, Luand (in Vihiga district), and to Oyugis on the border of Kisii district. I felt as secure as at any time on past visits to these areas as I was with people from the areas. For example, a former student took me to a restaurant/bar in Oyugis where we stayed up to dark absorbing local knowledge. We then drove to his rural home with no difficulty. Nor did I encounter any problems during my return drive to Nairobi.

My final two days were spent mainly in Westlands as the hotel where I stayed was convenient to the family members I wished to see. In Westlands, I visited the Sarit Centre which is now a mall filled with upscale shops and a food court similar to most shopping malls in the US. There were plenty of well-to-do Kenyans there. That evening I enjoyed a meal and conversation with nieces and nephews who live in the Westlands area. As we left to return to my hotel shortly after 10 pm, we were greeted by what I at first thought to be the sound of firecrackers. I was told by my companions and other residents drawn out of doors by the noise that these were gunshots. We waited for a time, but as they were not from the direction of the hotel, I went quickly back there.

My impression is that insecurity is on the minds of Kenyans as a result of such incidents as that. On the other hand, I do not think that insecurity is of such a magnitude as to discourage or dissuade former TEAers from visiting East Africa. One needs to understand the situation, take care in choosing where to travel, and avoid risks. From my perspective, I will have no hesitation in visiting Kenya again despite the incidents and observations noted in this brief account.

(Editor's note: While some will need to rush back to other commitments, others will linger in East Africa to fulfill personal agendas. Kate Parry, British TEA, divides her time between New York and Kampala, and wanted us to know about the following conference. Ben and Judith Lindfors have forwarded the information on the music Education conference. Let's see, Early June to late August, that would be about 10 weeks total in Africa!)

Conference on Reading in Kampala, August 2003
Kate Parry

The 3rd Pan African Conference on Reading for All is to take place in Kampala August 18-22, 2003. It will bring together , from all over Africa, a wide variety of professionals who are involved in the promotion of literacy - teachers, librarians, authors, publishers, community workers, and, simply, readers - and will be a superb opportunity to establish contacts across the continent and develop literacy projects that are mutually reinforcing. Visitors from other continents will be warmly welcome too, so TEAAs with any interest or expertise in the development of African (or other) reading cultures are urged to come and to consider making a presentation. For a copy of the conference brochure and call for papers, please contact Kate Parry, the Chair of the Presentations Committee (and a former TEA). She has two e-mail addresses, either of which will work: mail to: kateparry@earthlink.net or mail to: abkasozi@imul.com. The deadline for proposals is August 31 this year. Kate Parry, School of Education, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda, Tel. (256) (41) 543589

Pan African Society for
Musical Arts Education Conference (PASMAE)

Kisumu, Kenya, July 5-11, 2003.

The conference is sponsored by PASMAE, the Kenyan Assn for Musical Arts Ed., UNESCO, and ISME and hosted by the Dept. of Music, Maseno University. Theme: Solutions for Music Education in Africa. The major objective of the conference will be to provide workable solutions to the problems of music research, teaching, and performance particular to the continent. The conference will comprise plenary, workshop, paper, seminar, performance, and poster sessions. Location: Sunset Hotel, Kisumu. Registration: US$10!Contact person: Dr. Hellen A. O. Agak, Dept of Music, Maseno U, Box 333, Maseno, Kenya. Fax: 254 35 51221. Email: drjagak@swiftkisumu.com

This concludes the articles relative to the Summer '03 plans, but to whet your appetite and churn your memories, read on!

The Kajubis' 50th Wedding Anniversary
Fawn Cousens

[From the editor:] In early April we received, in a letter addressed to "Scribe Ed Schmidt and all TEA/TEEA Alumni," an invitation to the 50th wedding anniversary of Senteza and Elsie Kajubi, to be held on May 4 on the outskirts of Kampala. The invitation asked that, in lieu of traditional gifts, attendees consider giving a book or two to one of the schools, primary or secondary, that Senteza attended growing up. I passed the details, and promises to contribute to the purchase of books from a couple Steering Committee members, along to Fawn Cousens, our person in Kampala. Fawn responded: "I bought some books to give for the Wedding Anniversary I got two books for the Primary school -called Eyewitness Guides. They are illustrated and the subjects are 'Energy' and 'Flying Machines.' For the high school I got an illustrated atlas."

Fawn eagerly attended the anniversary, for herself and in our behalf. Here is her report :

From Fawn Cousens:

I arrived home at 10 pm from a most auspicious occasion. My early scouting of the venue turned out to be a good idea as the church was tucked away from the town and no one in the township of Nateete had heard of it. To further confuse matters there was another "Martyrs Church" a mile down the road, located on the main road in Busega. I arrived at the church and introduced myself to one of the lady ushers who conducted me inside and sat me in the third pew from the front. The first two were roped off and the section in front of that was reserved for the family.

A lady then came and sat by me and said that she knew the TEA teachers as she was at Makerere at that time. Her name is Deborah Etoori. Of course when I got the order of service I realized that the proceedings were to be in Luganda. I must confess that I have not studied the language - my husband did and does not do too badly. The service lasted for just over three hours and included 8 many-versed hymns, some sung by the congregations, some by the church choir, and others by a choir from Mackay College. Even Senteza and his wife sang a duet. When Senteza gave his talk at one point he lapsed into English and said that he had taught at Makerere and there were a number of American teachers who were there. He then asked if the representative of Teachers for East Africa was in attendance and when I raised my hand he asked me to stand and I got applauded.

Among the guests was the wife of the Kabaka - the Nabagereka, Lady Sylvia, looking most serene and regal in her basuti. Needless to say most of the ladies were in elegant basutis.

I spoke with Senteza briefly after the service - but as there were about 500 people in attendance (the usual number for a Ugandan wedding) I did not get to engage in a long conversation. I then asked if I could give someone a lift to the reception as I did not know the location of the house and could not find Bugolobi Road on my map of Kampala.

When I arrived at the reception another lady asked me where I wanted to sit. - Who did I know? Well I had actually only seen a few people I knew at the church - I was the only European but do know a large number of Ugandans. One of the people was a major Kampala businessman whom I know, and a pillar of Buganda society and so I said that I should not be sitting with him (he was put at the head table - but did come and shake my hand as he was walking by). The other person whom I knew did not make it to the reception so I was put at a table with some other Ugandans.

Of course at these functions there is little opportunity for conversation as you are seated at tables and there is either loud disco-type music, local troupes singing and dancing or speeches. I did see a friend of mine - William Kalema, who came in later so I joined him for the meal. There was a buffet supper with lots of matooke, two kinds of rice, potatoes, sweet potatoes, kidney beans, greens, string beans and carrots, roast chicken, stewed chicken and stewed beef. The cake was three-tiered with two other tiers on the side and one of the nicest fruit cakes I have had at this type of occasion.

I left about 9.30 and then came the job of finding my way home in the dark. Fortunately I managed to get to a main road and saw a young lady at a bus stop so I asked for directions to Jinja Road and as that was her destination,she hopped in and I got home with no problems.

All for now, thanks for passing on the invitation. Kind regards, Fawn

Mini TEA Reunion Held in Minneapolis
Carol Olson Heath

We had a very good time: thirteen people with TEA/Minnesota and/or Mwanza connections gathered for a picnic at Minnehaha Park on July 19, 2002. The Minnesotans included Bruce Levin, Bob Rogers, Judith Brandley Moore, Cathy Murray Mamer & John Mamer, Sharon Fuller Bigot, Carol Olson Heath, Ann Russell Dickinson & Paul Dickinson. And then there were those who traveled to join us: Sharon Joslin Hepburn & Bill Hepburn(FL),Colleen Peterson(CA), and Dick Ramsdell(MI). Just to clarify - Judith Moore and Cathy Mamer came to Africa on their own and were friends with some of us while we were there.

Some of us met for the first time, and other old friends were greeted with warm hugs. Our conversation was long, loud, and full of laughter. We marveled at what we remembered or had forgotten, we listened to what 35 or more years had brought to us - and we didn't want to leave until darkness and the first few mosquitoes told us it necessary.

We had a very good time. Cheers, Carol

The Book, The TEA Experience...
Judith Lindfors and Emilee Hines Cantieri

[From the editor:] The book, all 200 pages of it, assembled by Emilee Hines Cantieri and Judith Lindfors, with final editing by Judith, is still available in limited quantities. If you have failed to order your copy, you'll want to do so immediately. (If you bought it, but haven't read it, do. You'll be surprised by the wealth of information and interesting stories.) Judith's description:

  • a bit of our history
  • bios - our own unique TEA stories
  • then-and-now photos
  • reunion reflections
  • our visions, plans, hopes for moving forward
Send your check for $25, payable to TEAA, to:
Judith Lindfors
8200 Neely Dr., #253
Austin, TX 78759
judith.lindfors@mail.utexas.edu

Please be sure to include the address to which you want the book sent. Judith reports that a TEAA member has agreed to purchase all unsold copies of the book, so you should respond promptly to this announcement!

Obituary

Richard L (Dick) Hovey (1C) (from Dolores Hovey). Richard died Oct. 1, 01 in Cheyenne, Wyoming of cancer. Dick was so thrilled when he received your first newsletter. He went through the list of names and highlighted everyone he knew. He loved his experience in Uganda.

Dick and I were married in 1964, and in 1965 we went to Nigeria with our two month old daughter. Our youngest daughter was born in Kaduno. I truly enjoyed my experience and had a better understanding of Dick's enthusiasm for Africa.

We've Heard from You

Joel Reuben: I was glad to hear about the reunion being a success. We were in Europe on a 14 day Mediterranean cruise from September 8 to the 23rd. Needless to say, the events of Sept. 11th put a damper on things for us. We took a tour of Ghent, Belgium that morning and returned to the ship to witness the WTC tragedy live (due to the six hour time difference). Stayed in our cabin all day and night trying to get as much information as possible. On the 13th we were in Normandy, at the cemetery, and in light of the circumstances it was a truly moving experience.

In reading the news letter, especially the part about the differences between TEA and TEEA, I never realized the ratio of roughly 600 TEAers to 100 TEEAers. Since I was one of the minority let me try to point out our role as compared to the majority. Seventeen of us "tutors" were recruited in the winter and spring of 1966 - as I remember five from Long Island, two from New York State, and others from California, Indiana, Minnesota, Georgia, etc. I was the youngest at 29 and the oldest was well into his 60's. We were a tight knit group and we visited each other on school breaks as much as possible. Only two of us were assigned to Kenya - The Reubens to Chadwick TTC in Butere, and later Eregi TTC in Maragoli. The Carstens were stationed in Nyeri. The bulk of our wave were assigned to Tanzania-the Caplans, Strebs, Jack Humbles, Gene Hansen, Don Sorenson and others. I believe four went to Uganda.

In 1967, when the next wave came, we made it our business to greet them at Embakazi Airport in Nairobi to be visible proof that Americans could survive, and even prosper in the bush! They were most appreciative of our being there to answer their questions and calm their fears. Reality is always preferable to the classroom.

All of us had, as you may know, at least a masters degree and 5 years teaching experience as opposed to many of the TEA folks who just had bachelor degrees. The students we taught were probably inferior to the high school students taught by the TEA people. We often trained P-3 teachers - desperately needed to teach in the remote areas of the bush. They only had 7 years of primary education and two years with us. At my posting I taught education(The New Primary Approach) and English. I was fortunate enough to have taught some P-2 and P-1 teachers who had either 2 or 4 years of secondary education before our teacher training.

That's about it for now, Ed. Keep up the good work and be sure to include us in future newsletter mailings through e-mail. Sincerely, Joel Reuben

TEAA Members Publish

Larry W. Thomas. My sixth book is just out. Three Autobiographies is fantasy fiction and creative nonfiction. It isn't about East Africa, although some of my experiences there manage to creep in. Check it out at www.1stbooks.com if you have a minute.

Evelyn Avery. My book, The Magic Worlds of Bernard Malamud, (SUNY Press, Oct. 2001) is available from amazon.com where it can be also be reviewed.

Your Stories ...

... is a regular feature of the newsletter. If you haven't submitted your bit for this section, please consider doing so. Send copy to Ed Schmidt, addresses at the beginning of the newsletter.


Edward Hower, '63-'66. I taught in three schools in Nairobi, ending up at Kenyatta College SSD, all the while working on my first novel. After returning to the US, I got an MA in anthropology which I never used, kicked around at various jobs, including a counselor in reform schools, ESL teacher, salesman, spear-bearer for the NY City Center Opera Company (General of the Egyptian Army in Handel's Julius Caesar; no wonder we lost to the Romans). All the time I kept writing fiction and journalism, and my first novel, many times revised, was published in 1980. It's called The New Life Hotel, and is about a romance between a young American teacher and an African barmaid. The setting will bring back memories to many. Reviews were good but printing exceeded demand, so I have a garage full of the British edition of the book, which TEA alumni/ae can have at cost, $6. My 7th novel was published in January 2002, called Shadow and Elephants, set mostly in India, where I lived for two years on Fulbright grants - it's an historical novel based loosely on the lives of two 19th century spiritualists who sought wisdom and adventure in S. Asia. It's available from Amazon, etc, as will be my 8th novel, Garden of Demons, January 2003, set in contemporary Sri Lanka, with a cast of demons and terrorists as well as good guys. So my career was writing, and I'm still teaching, at Ithaca College, in Ithaca, NY. If you want me to mail you the first book, email me first just to confirm that I'm home - I still travel a lot, and I'll let you know my postal address. My email is edwardhower@hotmail.com

Now and then I see my good buddy and fellow black sheep, Mike Heinrich, TEA the same years, who taught in Mombasa, and is now an artist. Uganda and Kenya are still a rich part of my memory, but are they the places I lived or the ones I made up to write about? Does it matter?



Mabel Lee. Here's a quick update of my activities since '64: 64-66 - Mwanza, Tanzania; 67-71 - Machakos and Nairobi, Kenya; 72-77 - PA Dept. of Ed.; 77-87 - grad student at Penn State U; 81-86 research and development specialist, Charleston, W. Va.; 86-98 - Penn State University; and 98-00 - Ghana. My Ghanan assignment was via my involvement in the International Foundation for Education and Self-Help (IFESH) , a project operated by the late Leon Sullivan (bio at: http://globalsullivanprinciples.org/new_page_4.htm). I was to revisit Africa - Nigeria - for a Summit last November. The September 11 bombing changed those plans. I will know in June when the new date for the summit will be. By all means, keep me on the mailing list. I'd like to know if anyone in the group is near Philadelphia. (Note: Check out the IFESH website at http://www.ifesh.org - Ed.)



Marvin Berkowitz. Dear TEA alums, This is my first connection to TEA since the mid 60's when I left the newly independent Tanzania. I have been conflicted and timid about reaching out, as is my nature sometimes, wondering what would I say or have in common now nearly 40 years after. But I would be happy to say hello to those of you I once knew. As a New Jersey hick, I felt remarkably lucky to reach Africa in the first TEA wave, studied at Makerere College, Kampala, did student teaching in Kapsabet, Kenya. I was posted to Tabora, and after signing on for a 2nd tour to Mwanza and Iringa. I probably would have stayed beyond 4 years, but the offer was to continue teaching under local terms and we couldn't have maintained the wonderful lifestyle the supplement made possible. So I returned to the US with my English wife and baby, got a Ph.D. in industrial management & psychology in the expectation that I could do some good in the developing world, met the realities of the 60's with small children, and began to focus on working & living in NYC, where I have remained since. Now divorced, and retrained as a psychotherapist, I run a mental health clinic in lower Manhattan and see clients privately. My 4 children, following their parents' early adventurous ways are spread out over the globe - London, San Francisco, Japan. My Colorado girlfriend, doing yoga, dancing Argentine Tango, and playing softball occupy most of my time. Best wishes. Marvin Berkowitz, 780 West End Ave., 12B, New York, NY 10025, 212-662-8666.



Ted Housman. After teaching in E. Africa for 2 years I taught for another 34 years until retirement 1 July '99. During those years I was a demonstration/lab teacher in history and English for 4 yrs., married Margaret, a fellow history teacher, then after the birth of Karen (1967) we returned to overseas living and teaching for 5 yrs. in New Delhiand Karachi. Just before the '71 war between India and Pakistan our 2nd daughter, Lisa, was born in Karachi, followed by a 6-weeks sojourn/evacuation to Tehran, Iran - due to bombing!!! Since our return to New Jersey in '74 we have remained residing in Short Hills. During those 27 years we each taught high school AP history, raised the girls, and put them through college. Each then worked and financed her own graduate education is a professional business woman. In our 30+ yrs. with teaching we have traveled frequently overseas with the daughters, so the "bug" of languages, travel, and living abroad did bite! During the 8 yr. period of HS and college for each of the girls, Margaret and I attended and supported the girls' varsity participation in their sports. Each excelled in soccer, swimming and track. As I did, each also enjoyed coaching swim teams, too.

Retired, Margaret and I enjoy visits to London to visit with Lisa and her husband, Erik. Frequently we visit NYC's varied cultural institutions and share the City with Karen. Most recently, we did our first cruise! In May we sailed the Baltic Sea out of Dover, England. Next we plan to fly to Austin, Texas for a 1970's student and faculty reunion from the Karachi American H.S. over the 4th of July period. Our USA retreat is in Barnstable, Cape Cod. For years we spent our summers on the Cape; however, retirement allows us to visit our 2nd home for a week each month. Retirement is wonderful!!!



Mary Hines. Today is almost as hot as it was on August 11th 1964 when Wave Four began the 50 hour trip to Nairobi where we spent the evenings of our first few days sitting in front of a fire at the YWCA. The shivering was the second among many bits of irony my TEA experience provided. The first was learning during the orientation at Columbia that the students in Kisumu Girls' High School were not African but Asian. In fact, the school's name had been The Asian Girls' High School, separated from the Boys' High School next-door by a concrete barrier topped with broken shards of glass. Luo girls were admitted to my school the year I arrived but since I taught the upper forms I never had an African student. Nor did I have to rough it physically. I looked forward to visiting the Brandts in Homa Bay for that up-country experience.

My memory is of 27 months of intense work and joyful play. How could you not be caught up in the tension students were experiencing as the Cambridge loomed so large in their lives, your flat, your bed submerged under massive piles of essays in the course of the term and then greater piles of mock Cambridge papers. Within three months, by virtue of being a native speaker of English I was made the head of the English department, guiding and being guided by a teaching staff from different traditions, standards, and teaching styles, a British priest, a sewing teacher from Scotland, an American PCV, local Hindi, Punjabi, Goan and Farsi teachers. (When in Nairobi during the second year I was introduced at a party as having had a 100% Pass in Cambridge, I tried to be off-hand at one of the best accolades ever.) That talented class determined my career, for truth to tell, I thought I wanted to be a writer. But one day, studying the Old Man and the Sea, with a Cambridge bound class, students went beyond passages I had pointed out and I experienced the particular joy that comes from the creative nexus of teaching and learning, a "high" that doesn't occur often enough, but it is so rewarding that its pursuit, for me, has relegated writing to an avocation, and made teaching the center.

It was impossible to say no to all the drama productions we put on and the debates with those boys on the other side of that Berlin wall which our team always won. We tried putting on a joint production of Romeo and Juliet but tradition kicked in and only after casting the play did we learn that parents had been to our headmistress and to the headmaster next door. Still, the girls were wonderful in All's Well That Ends Well and A Midsummer Night's Dream thanks to Brian Hurst, a British TEAer who arrived in Kisumu the day after Phil Bly. Brian soon revealed an artistic streak as he designed and painted delightful forest scenes for our actors to romp about in.

Those were school activities. Soon after we arrived in Kisumu we found an empty theatre left intact by the RAF, revived the Kisumu Amateur Dramatic Society and began a series of drawing room comedies, culminating in Twelfth Night directed by Brian after he designed the sets and costumes on a scale that involved so many artisans and craftsmen that we made the East African Standard in Nairobi with something like "if you are not connected with Twelfth Night you don't live in Kisumu." It was all very heady.

And surpassed by the trips taken during school breaks, each one grander than the one before: with Barbara Hysop first through Uganda from Queen Elizabeth National Park to Murchison Falls, and then on a five day steamer trip around Lake Victoria; with Rose Mary Sullivan to Somalia via Addis, Djibouti, and Aden; to Lamu courtesy of Tony Merrifield who arranged for overland escort through Shifta territory and then a stay at the Provincial Commissioner's 12th century Arab fort before and after our launch trip to Patai; camping outside of Malindi and getting deathly sick on the Lamu trip barely making it to Rose Mary Sullivan's place in Dagaretti; to Olduvai Gorge and the hills of Kilimanjaro, Ngorongoro Crater, Serengeti with Ann Thomson and Armjeet Chadda; to Tree Tops each adventure better than the last only because it was the latest. When I saw Out of Africa I could just about smell the rarefied air of the Kenyan highlands, the memories are so vivid.

In between studying for an Ed. D. in TESOL at Teachers College, where when I returned from Kenya TEEA was still very much alive, I lived overseas in Cairo, had a Fulbright year in Yugoslavia, spent three years in Hungary coordinating a Teaching Fellow Program, and served as an Academic Specialist for USIA in some ten countries. Still, when asked I reply that the TEA experience was the best. There was something very special: the people, Africa at that particular time in history, the natural beauty, and the adventures. All.

I have to note that three months into my stay in Hungary in the early nineties, I realized I was in a program reminiscent of TEA. Sponsored by AID and USIA, it was meant to have a seven-year life, as school systems shifted from Russian to English as the required foreign language in secondary schools throughout the former Warsaw Pact countries. But this time the government chose to sub-contract out to as many as four groups various aspects of the program, recruiting, orientation, in-country training and administration, travel plans, evaluation, resulting in a lot of fragmented activities and missing some academic and professional soundness I think would have been present had the new program been modeled after TEA. No one from the Washington offices involved knew of TEA; one Foreign Service officer asked me to write a description of TEA. I did but never heard of a follow up.



Ray and Carole Buchanan. The first group to East Africa, we lived in Uganda from 1961-64, at Makerere (Ray,MA) and King's College, Budo (just outside Kampala). Ray taught there and Carole taught at a Catholic school. Our son, Stephen, was born "on the hill." Our experience in TEA sparked graduate study at Indiana U. in Bloomington: Carole in African History and Ray in Russian History - both awarded MA and PhD. We returned to Uganda in 1968 for Carole to research her dissertation with funding from Fulbright-Hayes. After interviewing dozens of old men about their clan histories, we left as the Pope arrived to proclaim the first African martyrs. These experiences naturally led to teaching: first at SMU History Department and Humanities Program where we were one of three married couples teaching in the same department! Then, when the University decided to eliminate that situation, we began the next 25+ years of fun and challenging teaching at the secondary level: Carole at an outstanding public school near us and Ray at a prestigious private school in "North Dallas"!

Many friends helped us through our greatest tragedy: the loss of our youngest son and Ray's parents in an auto accident. And we have taken our friends crabbing and ocean watching at our beach house on the Gulf of Mexico. But, looking toward retirement has drawn us back to Ray's roots with the purchase of a house on Lake Buchanan, in the Central Texas area (sold the beach house). Before too long you can come see us for great lake vistas and a white bass dinner! Cheers, Ray and Carole

TEAA on the Web

After the publication of the January newsletter, Henry Hamburger created a website using the newsletter as raw material. That website has since been updated and the address changed slightly. Check it out!

TEAA Steering Committee

Frank Ballance, fearless leader, FBallance@aol.com, Brooks Goddard, Kampala03 will be, goddard@rcn.com, Dale Otto, Eottod@open.org, Henry Hamburger, treasurer and web consultant, henryh@cs.gmu.edu, Mary Taras, mrtaras1@earthlink.net, Judith Lindfors, book editor and official conference planner for Kampala, Judith.Lindfors@mail.utexas.edu, Lee Smith, othello2@prodigy.net, Ed Schmidt, eschmidt1@mindspring.com

Addenda
Bob Maxon has been teaching history at West Virginia University since 1969. He holds a PhD in African history from Syracuse University. His specialty is East Africa, particularly colonial Kenya. His wife, Felicia, is from western Kenya. Professional and personal interests have taken him back to Kenya on numerous occasions over the years. He has served as visiting professor at Moi University outside Eldoret on three occasions, most recently in 1998, and he as supervised the doctoral studies of faculty from Moi and Maseno Universities. In the 1960s, Bob was noted for having an entire class which he taught pass the school certificate exam in history and for his skill as a soccor goalie.

The newsletter prompted these responses:

Emilee Hines Cantieri. My book, IT HAPPENED IN VIRGINIA, pub. 9/2001, is available on Amazon.com. It's 33 interesting incidents that made Virginia what it is, and early VA history is everybody's history. $9.95.

David Court reports: A quick piece of information: My wife and I spent a week recently in Oxford England where we spent a delightful afternoon with Sue Matthew (Curry) whose husband from UK TEA died about one year ago. She continues as the principal of a an experimental school in Oxford and seemed very involved in the academic life of the university in which her husband was such a major figure. We also met her daughter who coordinates the developmental work of the singer Bono from U2 and had arrived back that day from the African trip which Bono made along with Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill about which she had much to report.