“Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today.”
― Malcolm X
If preparation is the key to success, think of the added value and difference it makes for students to have not only classroom tools but basic supplies to meet their daily needs in and out of the classroom environment. We began organizing supplies on the first Monday (29 April) after a long weekend following two back-to-back public holidays going into a weekend in Tanzania (Easter Holidays and Union Day). The TFFT Scholarship team is hard at work sorting out basic supplies for TFFT Scholars who have started school after a two week break for the first term which spans from January to June. The basic items provided for this part of the term include laundry and bathing soap, tooth brush, toothpaste, shoe polish, cotton ear buds, sanitary wear for girls, toilet paper, petroleum jelly, handkerchiefs, and hair tonic.
Going back to school is an exciting time for TFFT Scholars as it represents an opportunity to make a fresh start, an opportunity to strengthen gains made last term, and presents endless possibilities of translating the desired future into reality, step-by-step. Along with meeting their classmates, teachers, and gaining knowledge, there is also the chance to reinvent oneself with every new school term and year. TFFT recognizes that children can never reach their full potential in school if they lack the necessary tools to learn. Providing children with their own school supplies builds self-esteem and frees up family resources for essentials such as food, medicines, and utilities for most resource constrained families trying to fight their way out of poverty.
At the beginning of each new term, TFFT provides essential school supplies like pencils, pens, rubber, paper, and textbooks to help students confidently, meaningfully, and actively participate in lessons, as they gain knowledge which they can bring back to their community to improve overall welfare. Moreover, when teachers have students who cannot provide their own materials, it places an incredible burden and strain on the classroom experience, compromising on quality assured, participatory, and inclusive learning. The learning environment in Tanzania is resource-constrained and TFFT also invests in helping teachers by providing them with proper tools for their classrooms so they don’t have to spend money from their own pockets. The average secondary teacher in Tanzania with only standard training earns only 270,000 shillings (about $167 US) per month, according to Gratian Mukoba, President of the Teachers’ Union. Even teachers who hold an advanced degree earn only 350,000 ($216) on average.
The TFFT Team is grateful to Thrive Global Project and our Sponsors for helping give our scholars the tools they need to succeed. By providing school supplies, you are supporting students, teachers, schools, and communities to have a fighting chance through the potent power of education against the debilitating effects of poverty. The gift of education can last a lifetime, providing not only basic learning tools but also confidence to be able to maximize their learning experience and other opportunities throughout their lives.
“I’m going back to school with the peace of mind and confidence that I can focus undisturbed on my studies and succeed because all my basic needs are catered for.” – Sirili Robert (TFFT Scholar, Form 2 Shepherds Secondary)
“As a former TFFT Scholar, I looked forward to each new school day because I was supported with my basic needs and had the the self esteem and dignity to engage with my peers without the discomfort of feeling less than an equal.” – Nicemary Felix (TFFT Alumni and part time Intern)