The Group

Aaron Franczek, Collin Hartman,Monica Kling, Sarah Meleski, Claire Pattison, Amanda Schmidt, Becca Scholz, Alyssa Stuiber, Becky Thorn, Ryan Treviranus, Gracie Ventura Haas, Marcie Weiss, Jenny White, Robert Bhatia, Jill Braasch, Jenni Herrick and Laine Philippa

Monday, May 28, 2012

Windmill Project: Work Day 1 by Jill Braasch

Tanzanian students share academic experiences

While you may have enjoyed a relaxing Holiday with family and friends, our group put in a full day on the job.  We were quite excited and ready to begin the work that brought us here.  The above ground water tank and below ground water pump had already been installed.  Our job started with shovels, picks, and hoes as we dug holes a cubic meter (39 inches).  The next stage in the process was moving rocks of ALL sizes, hauling water in buckets (not on our heads),  and mixing and dumping cement.  So in essence, we dug holes that by the end of the day we filled!  In the center of each cement cube a pipe was placed, which will hold the legs of the windmill tower.  Despite the physical exhaustion and dirty appearance, we are eagerly looking forward to the next days of construction.

As in previous days, our tangible and intangible rewards for our labor were abundant.  Mrs. Neema Peter Majule, Director of Rhema Academy Nursery, Primary, and Secondary Schools, expressed her genuine appreciation of our work. It was a sad story that she related about the first well drilling experience that they had encountered:  A well had been drilled for the school, but had not been dug deep enough.  Water ran for a short time after the well driller accepted payment and left.  Their gratefulness for our efforts is beyond words.  We were treated to an authentic and filling Tanzanian lunch during our break.  At the end of our work day, Mrs. Majule and her entire staff formally met with us to inform us of the school's history and student population and to collectively share their thanks.  The students are adorable!

Upon returning to our Tanzanian home, we showered and got ready for an extra special meal as we were entertaining guests.  Five young Tanzanian ladies joined us and later shared their experiences regarding their education.  The panel represented diversity in the ways of grades, ages, religions, as well as academic and professional goals.  In turn, they posed questions to our group.  We learned from each other.

Rest assured, our students are developing new skills and gathering more stories to be offered on their resumes and during future job interviews.  Stay tuned for the next report on our progress of assembling the windmill!

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