The question most asked when I tell people Tanzania is where Northwest University is being called to serve in community development. The thing is most have heard of this country from stories of daring climbers who summit Mt. Kilimanjaro and the old world charm of going on a safari and Disney’s Lion King to name of few. But beyond these thrill adventures is a world very few even touch. The porter who lugged your suitcase to your room, the tour guide driving the vehicle on safari, go home to a very different world beyond the luxury we as travelers enjoy. After all, this is Africa, and even in East Africa, there is still poverty starring the traveler straight in the eye.
Beyond the wall of a luxury resort is a reality seen by few who look closely. Even though Tanzania is relatively a safe country, there is still citizens who live below the poverty level of a $1 a day, being born female is a disadvantage, and education is still behind. You can say it all stems from unrest, wars, colonial period (German and British) and trade disadvantages. All are true, and all are a part of the fabric of what makes the Tanzanian people such a vibrant group of people.
This vibrant group of people is the reason why I went to Tanzania. A once in a lifetime opportunity to see the world from a different perspective, and to find what I have been told is Ubantu, “the belief we are defined by our compassion and kindness towards others.” Something I found to be the heart and soul of the people of Tanzania and Africa.
In the following posts is a recount of my journey in the heart of Tanzania, and the ubantu of Africa.