2018 – Our Year in ReviewDecember 26, 2018 2:38 pm
It’s been quite a year- and all of us at Mainsprings can’t believe how quickly the months have flown by! As they say, ‘time flies when you’re having fun’! But, this year truly has been a banner year for all of us at Mainsprings. Here are just a few of the many highlights from this wonderful year!
Campus Expansion! We were able to successfully build our first three permanent buildings on our second campus in Kahunda. These include a two-story chicken mansion which can hold over 2,000 chickens, our first dorm block with two apartments for 16 girls, and our girls’ home dining hall! We are so excited to welcome our first 16 girls to the Mainsprings family in the next month and continue to grow our campus in this new community, helping ensure these girls and the whole surrounding area are given a chance to live a life out of poverty.
More Graduates! Just a few weeks ago, we graduated our fourth class from our secondary school. Out of the 14 graduates, four of those are our residential girls- Jackie, Teddy, Leticia, and Happy. We are sad to see all of these students leave our campus, but we are excited for their next steps in life as they continue to grow into the strong, empowered, capable leaders of tomorrow. With these graduates, this means that 21 of our residential girls have flown the nest and are either continuing with their pursuit of higher education (some of our first girls began university this fall!) or working in the field of their choice.
New Girls! With so many graduating girls each year, we are able to accept new members into our family! This year, we saw us welcome Hawa, Ashura, Little Salma, and Winnie into our family – our youngest girls ever accepted into our residential program and girls’ home.
Growth of the Board! In the spring, our board elected a new Chair to the Board, Lindsay Fick. Lindsay has been involved with Mainsprings since our founding, but after retiring earlier this year, decided she had the time to take on the role of Board Chair. Lindsay and Chris worked diligently throughout the year to reorganize our Board and it has recently been approved to drastically increase the size of our Board! This expansion will help Mainsprings reach into even more communities and have a greater wealth of expertise. Check out the ever-growing list of members on our website!
More Local Leadership! While we were sad to see both Melinda Wulf and Paula Casimiro leave our team in Tanzania this year, we are excited about the fact that we were able to take even more steps to turn our leadership in Tanzania over to East African nationals. It has always been a fundamental belief that we want this organization to be run by Tanzanians, for Tanzanians, because this local leadership will ultimately be able to run more culturally relevant and sustainable programs, and 2018 was our biggest step yet in moving towards this goal!
Volunteers Galore! This year, we hosted over 126 volunteers on our campus in Kitongo. It is quite the task to get this many volunteers halfway around the world, but as each of them walk away with a new perspective on our world and empowered by the change that is happening in Tanzania through Mainsprings, we continue to be excited to provide this experience to teenagers, adults, and families alike! Volunteers help with a range of projects and activities, such as organizing an Olympics Day for our students, helping throw our Children of Africa celebration, participating in tutoring and reading buddies, and working hard on the farm. But, what’s most important about this experience is the relationship that is formed between all of our volunteers and members of our campus- from our residential girls, to students, to staff and community members.
THANK YOU FOR AN AMAZING 2018!! SEE YOU NEXT YEAR!
This post was written by Mainsprings