This week’s #Service Spotlight comes to us from Tanzania. I’ve had a wonderful time being connected to project director, Albert Kahai, and am excited to share his story. As Albert writes, “together, we are better.”
Liz: Let’s start in traditional Smile Project fashion. Give me a ‘Happiness is.’
Albert: Happiness is being someone who makes other people smile because of their presence.
Liz: Tell me about your organization.
Albert: A Joy kindergarten was established under A Joy Group, a community-based organization working in Mafinga Iringa, Tanzania. We are a kindergarten, pre, and primary school that gives free education to benefit the less fortunate children and families in our area. We give all children a chance at education without dropouts. We use a very “modern” approach where we do not differentiate between children with different religions or tribes. Everyone is equal at this place.
Liz: What is the driving force behind what you do?
Albert: The thing that most attracted me to found this project is the big gap between the rich and poor children. Everyone, every kid, deserves a good education. Most of the wealthier families here send their kids to English speaking schools, and those who do not, have to go to a school with poor education. We established this project in 2017 to help kids, especially from poor families, get a good education, for them to feel they also deserve that, we also enroll children from the street to end child labor. No one has to be left behind.
Liz: What does service mean to you?
Liz: How can people get involved?
Albert: People and friends may get involved through volunteering to our project. We do give accommodation for free, lunch, dinner, and breakfast—locally made because it’s cheaper. All our supporters are volunteers including infrastructures and many other things. On behalf of my team I truly am grateful. Volunteers will get involved in many different activities we have at the project. Currently when we receive donations we will implement or build a hand washing station for the kids to wash hands for their health. You can visit our website.
Liz: Do you have a favorite quote or piece of advice?
Albert: What we do today we will have an impact in the future, positive or negative. Better to create smiles in the faces and hearts of the less privileged children. Education is Power.