Imagine having to travel great distances to go to secondary school. This is the case for many young women in the Diocese of Tabora, Tanzania. And while Tanzania has made great strides in offering post primary education to girls, these secondary schools are often kilometers away from where the girls live with their families. Walking for hours to get to school is very dangerous. Families are loathe to put their girls in boarding situations close to the school because of the danger that is often involved in these settings.
This project to build a safe hostel for secondary students is part of an overall strategy by the Diocese to increase access to education for girls. The hostel also creates a welcoming community of girls who are also encouraged to worship together at the local church. In 2013, ARDF funded the construction of a similar hostel. Happyness Gasper (see quote below) is one student who benefited from a Diocesan hostel.
Because the need is so great, ARDF is partnering with the Diocese of Tabora to fund another hostel. As the city grows and the government encourages more schools to open, there are consequently more students who need safe housing. What makes this project sustainable is the fact that the rent received will help fund church-planting activities in the Diocese.
In Their Own Words
“I completed Form IV at St. Peters Secondary School-Tabora, owned by the Diocese of Tabora of the Anglican Church of Tanzania. My parents stay [37 miles] from Tabora Municipal where the school is located. If there were no hostel at the school … I would not have gotten the chance to attend secondary school. But, because the accommodation here is comparatively affordable and safe, my parents agreed to pay for me to stay there and attend school.”
— Happyness Gasper, former student at St. Peter’s Secondary School, Sikonge, Tabora, Tanzania