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June 16th is the Day of the African Child. It was first established by the Organization of the African Unity in 1991. The day aims at raising awareness for the situation of children in African soil, and on the need for continuous improvement in education. It encourages people’s spirit to share what they have with a child in Africa.
In this year’s event, for Lushoto district was held at Sunga Mtae in Lushoto district around the compounds of Upendo Agricultural secondary school. The Youth Peace Makers Tanzania participated in the celebration of the Day of African Child, which commenced with a motorcade at district commissioner office in Lushoto. The ridding to the area of the event took place around 9 a.m.
The event was attended by the District commissioner hon. January Lugangika who was the guest of honor, Mrs Ikupa Mwasyoge the Lushoto District Executive Director (DED), Mr Mahanyu General Secretary of CCM in Lushoto district, Mrs Joyce Israel, the Development, gender and Child officer in Lushoto district, Mrs Doris, the Director of Legal Vision Organization, HE for SHE Club from IJA Lushoto, Lushoto OCD representative and a few others.
Speaking on behalf of children across the district and country at large, Mrs Joyce thanked the government for implementing Early Childhood Education, giving access to education for children with disability. Furthermore, the officer appreciated the work of Youth Peace Makers Tanzania in promoting and defending the child’s right through its different programs.
Different groups of children
There were also speeches from District Commissioner (DC), District Executive Director (DED), development, gender and child officer as well as CCM party representatives. The content of these speeches focused on the rights of the child and how these rights can be protected. But also they highlighted issues like early marriage, child labour and how children are treated in families and the communities. There was no doubt that civil societies have made a great contribution in advocating and protecting the rights of the child through raising awareness and educating the society.
Generally, too much emphasis was put on educating African child. And therefore, a request was sent to the government to enforce the laws in place and other policies in favour of children’s education but also civil society and other individuals who are advocating for child’s rights should fasten their shoelace to protect and defend the right of a child in Africa.
On 23rd February 2019 YPM received 21 visitors from Haugland, Norway who came to Tanzania to learn about African traditions and to see some YPM’s programmes. They stayed in Tanzania up to the 3rd day of March 2019. When they arrived on the 23rd February they went to passionist hotel where they rested for a while then they visited Bongoyo island which is in the city of Dar Es Salaam. On 24th February they went to Mikumi National Park where they spent a night, and on 25th February they enjoying a morning safari at Mikumi National park. On the same day around 11 hours they left Mikumi for Lushoto where they arrived at 21 hours. They spent a night at Lushoto Highland Hotel, whereas on 26th they went to YPM office where they learnt various programs which are done by YPM. The YPM management and program officers gave presentations pertaining the programs which are done by YPM. Later in the evening the visitors met the tensing group, in which the tensing group shared what they are doing, and they ended playing volleyball together. On 27th February morning they visited The Children’s home which is located at Irente where they learnt the centre’s history, played with the children, and then they went to Irente farm where they got an amazing experience of seeing some plants which they have never seen in their lives, such as sugarcane, cassava, avocado tree, banana trees, etc. They also enjoyed lunch at Irente farm. In the afternoon they went to Ubiri secondary school where they saw YPM Clubs which are Subject to Citizen club and the Environmental club. Those clubs showed fashion shows, there was music dance, singing, presentations about environmental conservation in Tanzania, the right of pregnant girls to continue with school, and the right to education in Tanzania generally. The visitors also shared their home country experience regarding those presentations. Finally the visitors sang a song.
On 28th February in the morning they went to Magamba forest for biking and hiking, then they went back to YPM’s office. In the afternoon they went to Ntumbi village and met with VICOBA groups where they learnt how the said groups invest money and take loans, their projects and the way they observe their rules in managing their groups. During the evening they went to the families in those villages where 2 visitors went to one family where they cooked food and learnt how those families lives, therefore they spent a night in those respective families.
On 1st March they prepared breakfast in those families where they spent a night, and thereafter they went back to the hotel where they rested for a while. In the evening they played a football match with YPM football team. In the evening they went to Irente view to enjoy the sunset at Irente cliff. Finally they got a farewell dinner at Irente view hotel with YPM Staff, tensing representative and Football team representative. Finally they went back to Highland hotel.
On the 2nd day of March at 6 hours in the morning they left Lushoto for Dar Es Salaam where they arrived at 14 hours where they went to the cultural market and bought some stuffs. Then they went to Passionist hotel where they had reflections and deliberations about their trip, and they rested for a while before going to the airport. At 23 hours on the same day they left the hotel and went to the airport. On the 3rd day of March at 4 hours they took a flight to Norway.
Their stay was fruitful and enjoyable, we have learnt a lot from them and they learnt a lot from us as well despite the timetable being very tight. But all of them were able to participate fully in all programs. We cordially invite them to Tanzania once again.