In my September 28 post I wrote that I was pleased to announce a challenge grant, of $1,500, toward initiating the community farm project that Paul Yoronimo, Head Teacher at Ufani Primary School, had started talking about two years ago. The donor, who asked to remain anonymous, promised to match every dollar donated to Karimu up to $1,500.
At least one thing that beats the pleasure of announcing a challenge grant is the thrill of saying that the challenge has been met—and I can do that today. Three separate donations, including one for $1,500 that reached my post office box this morning, have put us over the top, at $1,850.
I am eager to inform Paul that Karimu (www.karimufoundation.org) can therefore wire $3,350 to him to kick off the farm project. This does not sound like a lot of money by the standards of a rich country like the United States, but it will go a long way in rural Tanzania.
Giving Paul the good news not via e-mail, but in person, so that I could see his face, would be best. During the last six summers, however, I have spent enough time in the company of this dedicated teacher to be able to picture his joy. That will have to do, and it is plenty good enough.
Although we will pursue fundraising goals for other projects in Paul’s village over the upcoming several months, ahead of Karimu’s next visit to Tanzania in June and July of 2013, we are enormously satisfied to have met one important goal even before our most strenuous fundraising efforts have begun. Our appreciation for the small handful of donors who made this possible is deep and heartfelt. All of them have either visited Dareda Kati Village or helped family members visit, so they all understand both the far-reaching needs of the village and the deserving nature of its people.
About the community farm project, I wrote the following in my September 28 post:
“Paul’s idea is that participating villagers would supplement the foreign capital with their own monthly contributions of a few dollars each, enabling them to buy high-profit livestock, especially hogs. Hogs have been beyond the purchasing power of nearly all of Dareda Kati’s subsistence farmers. If we can find a way to match our donor’s generosity, the fifty-odd farmers who have joined Paul’s community association will see profits that they have hardly dared to dream about. . .”