The Meserani Project
The Meserani Project is a unique ‘home-grown’ charity owned by the students, parents, staff and friends of Acklam Grange School, Middlesbrough. It provides an ongoing link between Acklam Grange School, (particularly our students – our future citizens) and a community in Tanzania that is not able to provide even a basic education for the young people in their area. The primary focus is on providing primary education, secondary education, further education and higher education for young people in an area of Tanzania where such education opportunities are not accessible to them, due to poverty and family circumstances.
We are a relatively small-scale project, but we currently support 174 young people from the Meserani region of Tanzania – 102 students are attending one of three secondary schools that we have links with, six students are at Arusha Vocational Training Centre, twenty are studying A’ Levels at High School, seven students are studying Diplomas at university & college and four students are studying degree courses at university. We also have two students who are applying to Arusha Vocational Training Centre, and thirty-three students who have just completed secondary school and are waiting for the national examination results.
Further to ensuring that these young people have an education, we have also built and furnished twelve classrooms in three primary schools, provided twenty-four water tanks to four schools, installed solar power in a girls’ boarding school and renovated the teachers’ homes in a primary school.
The project has evolved from these successes, and now has five current strands:
- Providing basic writing equipment, exercise books and text books for four primary schools at Meserani: Meserani Juu School, Meserani Chini School, Lesiraa School and Losingira School.
- Sponsoring an increased number of students to attend Moita Boys Secondary Boarding School, Kipok Girls Secondary Boarding School and Irkisongo Girls Secondary Boarding School.
- Sponsoring an increased number of students to go through further education, ranging from Vocational Courses right through to A Level studies.
- Sponsoring an increased number of students to go through higher education, ranging from Diploma Courses right through to University degrees.
- Supporting the provision of basic classroom and dormitory accommodation at Kipok Girls Secondary Boarding School.
- Engaging with the Meserani community in their efforts to build a secondary school to serve the young people in their area.
Through engaging with the schools and communities identified above, the project aims to:
- Provide the young people with a decent education, thereby giving them an actual chance to make progress in their lives.
- Developing the independence necessary to escape poverty.
- Give the young people hope, and ambition.
- Give local communities and families pride in the achievements of their children.
The project is run, at their own expense, by a group of six trustees from Teesside. There are no administrative costs, every penny that is raised is spent directly on the project in Tanzania – nothing at all is syphoned off as necessary expenses.