what have we done already?
Global Bridges is an initiative that aims to empower young adults to become leaders, key voices and contributors in the sustainable development of their communities. We work together to create educational opportunities and provide tools that support life skills training, business entrepreneurship and relational building. Daraja Foundation has launched clubs under a concept called Global Bridges that is currently being offered to students of Zanzibar Learning for Life Foundation. Global Bridges consists of skill focused clubs that are run by students, including chicken and permaculture farming, bicycle maintenance and repair training, nutrition education, food and beverage service apprenticeships, language, arts and cultural exchange.
Students join a club with an aim to learn, train and sustain the club’s vision through fundraising and business initiatives. The clubs start with a mission tailored by students, and and grows into a training centre and business and promotes education, empowerment and employability. Global Bridges offers club memberships with opportunities to enroll in 3 or 6 month skills training of various programs. Members of the programs receive mentorship and hands-on training in order to gain practical skills, learn business and entrepreneurship, set a mission, vision and goals, share knowledge, build relations and receive educator training in order to pass on their newly learned skills to others. This may ultimately lead to greater study and career opportunities as a result of the new skills learned as well as the chance to obtain a scholarship for further education or a microfinance loan at the end of the program. All programs interlink with each other, sharing ideas and methods.
The founding members of a club volunteer their time to build on the vision. We work with partner organizations, donors and volunteers to create training manuals that new trainees will benefit from. In Phase I, students learn skills that relate to the club itself, and in Phase II, they take on a mentorship role, learning about business essentials and have the opportunity to apply for sponsorship to continue their education, support with employability and career planning or a microfinance loan to start their own business.
For the future
Profits from the Chicken Farm and Bike Shop businesses are used to sustain the business and the school. Funds go towards business expenses, student allowances and salaries for the teachers and maintenance costs of the school. The teachers at ZL4LF are all previous students of the school.
As ZL4LF’s founder, Shafii, and students share the stories of growing their own businesses, they continue to get more and more support globally. Organizations from other countries are now looking to get involved, share ideas on business and sustainability, and continue to donate towards and support new initiatives as the centres grow.
Sponsorship, Employment and Microfinance
The Global Bridges concept has created several opportunities for students of ZL4LF as well as Mazizini orphanage. Daraja Foundation has now launched the online version of Phase II Global Bridges whereby active students that have taken English classes at ZL4LF, and that have completed training and business education within the clubs can apply for sponsorship, microfinance loans and support with employment opportunities. We also provide this opportunity for youth that have left Mazizini orphanage at the age of 18.
Several graduates of the Chicken Farm and Bike Shop have gone forward with sponsorships based on their business and career interests such as college, driving lessons and tourism training. Since the launch, 8 students have been sponsored through several organizations. Sponsorships and funding for continued education have been provided by Daraja Foundation, ZL4LF, KAWA Training Institute, the Rotary Club of Zanzibar and Sunwapta Solutions Inc. Students from ZL4LF are now working with volunteers from World Unite to submit applications through the Global Bridges Program. We have received 5 new applications so far this year.
Our first loan was given to Amina, who previously lived at Mazizini orphanage. Volunteer supporters are continuing to guide her through the start of her small business. She is now registered to operate and is building on her concept. Sunwapta Solutions Inc. in Calgary and a Daraja volunteer from the US contributed to this microfinance loan. The business is called Global Bridges Culture and Wellness Centre. The location is near the Mazizini orphanage house. The business will have 3 components, a restaurant, spa and shop. Amina plans to provide food services, spa services, and education on the history of Zanzibari culture and engagement in local and traditional practices in the communities of Zanzibar.
Without access to internet, the applicants would not be able to use search engines for research or email to communicate. From the offices of Zanzibar Learning 4 Life Foundation to the offices of Daraja Foundation, Zanlink makes this possible by providing us with internet for students, volunteers and coordinators to use in Zanzibar.
Water in small communities
A kind donor FROM Seychelles donated towards digging 2 wells for communities where water access is difficult and limited. The projects have already started in Muungoni and Tunguu, lead by highly respected community members, the founders of ZALA Park and ZL4LF. We were advised by them as to where these wells are needed. Their NGO’s support these communities, particularly with education, child development and environmental protection. Community water access will support over 30 families in each area and students attending both schools.
THANK YOU AGAIN FOR YOUR CONTINUED SUPPORT
AHSANTE KWA MSAADA WAKO
Chicken & Organic Farm
Over a year ago we bought a piece of land that required a lot of work. On this land we envisioned a place run by students practicing permaculture and poultry farming. There was space for chicken coops, a residence, a classroom and lots of potential for a business.
Five founding members of the farm attended a 2 week permaculture training course at Practical Permaculture Institute of Zanzibar (PPIZ), sponsored by Daraja Foundation. In addition the founding members visited several poultry farming sites, researched various models and learned about chicken care by a Daraja volunteer who facilitated the farm project in 2014. During this time, a course called Biashara, developed by One Love Africa Foundation was also taught to the club members, introducing them to business and entrepreneurship.
Here we are now, with ZL4LF students and teachers, a training centre, a small business, chickens, fruits, vegetables and much more - and we are continuing to grow. The chicken farm has hired a full-time in house manager, previously the farm’s student club President.
This year, five new student trainees from ZL4LF were sponsored by the Rotary Club of Zanzibar to attend the permaculture training at PPIZ. These 5 trainees are also residents of the farm and are being taught poultry farming basics through a manual created by the same volunteer that had returned to Zanzibar for her 4th time to see the project through. In the second half of their 6 month term, they will also take the Biashara business and entrepreneurship course, which can be taught by volunteers and current club members that have completed the training. The educational pieces and mentorship from current members in second phase will bring the new trainees to completion of the first phase. At this mark, they will be ready for new trainees to join and they will be prepared to mentor them.
Daraja Foundation donors and volunteers, Practical Permaculture Institute of Zanzibar, the Rotary Club of Zanzibar, One Love Africa Foundation and All Saints Anglican Church are greatly appreciated for making the chicken and organic farm a continued success. We continue to receive support from various avenues to educate our students and provide them with the tools to improve and keep moving this initiative forward. ZL4LF has gained interest from several organizations around the globe that are starting to raise funds and contribute to new initiatives on the farm, including the construction of a classroom and a separate residence for trainees and staff.
Chakula Hai is a Global Bridges initiative embracing the value in nutrition and well-being while learning about food preparation, business and public service. Members are either training at various restaurants such as Taperia Wine & Tapas Bar, Green Garden Restaurant and Lukmaan Restaurant or studying in college. Members continue to share knowledge through nutrition classes, food and beverage service apprenticeships and college scholarships for chef training and front office training. Trainees are learning various things - from how to cook and prepare food safely, to serving and interacting with guests.With the help of volunteers,
Chakula Hai members and Girls Club are now collaborating to create a training manual on nutrition, a cookbook, hand-crafted kitchen items and a student-run food service that provides nutritional education for guests. The dinner service allows us to put into practice what we've learned from partners.The nutrition manual and classes are being developed by nursing volunteers from World Unite. It will be used to teach trainees as more members join the club and as the club runs as a student-lead business. Support from volunteers, restaurant managers and staff, as well as donors, including Rotarians, help us continue to improve and grow.
Daraja has been involved with this orphanage since 2013. Our volunteers have engaged in educational and fun activities with the children, including weekly tutoring, journaling, teaching health classes, hosting art events, beach events, kite festivals, football games, talent shows, restaurant outings and market outings. Daraja Foundation was provided with a room in the building of which our volunteers turned into an environment for learning which they called the library. With the use of this space, the foundation makes contributions towards English tuition weekly, participation in clubs and creative thought, nutrition education and life skills development. ZL4LF students and Daraja Foundation volunteers have also taken on roles as mentors and advocates by supporting personal growth, ideas, talents and preparation for life after the orphanage.
Life After the Orphanage
Our main focus at the orphanage is maintaining a connection and providing support for those youth that leave the orphanage at the age of 18. Since 2012, over 5 have left, and in the next couple of years another 5 will leave. We are in touch with all of them, and encourage them to become students of ZL4LF and continue their education through English courses and involvement in Global Bridges Program. Our work with each of them involves mentorship and guidance, life skills education, and support with employability and living situations.
Children’s Cottage Society
In 2016, Daraja Foundation pledged $2000 to the Children’s Cottage Society that went towards health assessment equipment for residents. Since then, the Children’s Cottage Society and Daraja Foundation developed to enrich current programming for families at the Brenda House, in areas of health and nutrition. The partnership is engaged in an initiative to develop a nutrition education program that will benefit parents and children residing at the house. Activities of this initiative include nutrition education and cooking classes that are facilitated with the help of local experts and volunteers. Classes emphasize learning the nutritional value of food and understanding how a parent can prepare healthy, nutritious meals for their family on a limited budget. The nutrition manual and recipes that is being used at the Children’s Cottage Society was developed by Daraja volunteers that continued to work on our projects after returning from the volunteer abroad program in Zanzibar. The program from Calgary is being replicated by volunteers and students in Zanzibar as are now developing a nutrition manual with classes through the Chakula Hai of the Global Bridges Program.
In 2015, Bicycles for Humanity partnered with Daraja Foundation to ship a container of bicycles to Zanzibar and lease a building in a small community to facilitate a training centre and student-run bike shop. The lead member of this project in Calgary brought his family to Zanzibar to receive the bicycles and guide the start-up of the centre. Bicycles for Humanity also paid for trainers from Uganda to come teach the founding members about bicycle maintenance and repair. During this time, a Daraja volunteer also taught the Biashara course provided by One Love Africa Foundation. The bike shop members are all students from ZL4LF and Mazizini orphanage. They have a vision to provide young people with opportunities to learn about bicycles, business and entrepreneurship. The shop continues to be student-run, and has recently hired the the founding President of the club as the full-time manager and training lead.
Bicycles for Humanity (Calgary Chapter) kindly donated a second container of bicycles and shipment costs. The container contained over 400 bicycles as well as tools, and arrived in November of 201. The Daraja Foundation assisted with funds for import and clearance of the container, and outstanding fees were paid by the Bike Shop!
Our next step is to implement a training manual for new members of the club, just as we did at the farm. We are currently working with Bicycles for Humanity to create a manual for the Bike Shop.
PAYING IT FORWARD
ON INTERNATIONAL VOLUNTEER DAY (DECEMBER 5TH, 2016), BIKE SHOP MEMBERS AND STUDENTS FROM EWQIP HUB REPAIRED BICYCLES AND DONATED BICYCLES TO KAWA TRAINING INSTITUTE (CERTIFIES TOUR GUIDES IN STONE TOWN), ZALA PARK (MANGROVE CONSERVATION CENTRE IN MUUNGONI) AND ZL4LF STUDENTS FROM THE SCHOOL. WITH THE BIKES, ZALA PARK PLANS TO SUSTAIN THE CONSERVATION CENTRE AND THE PRIMARY SCHOOL THEY SUPPORT IN THEIR COMMUNITY THROUGH CULTURAL BICYCLE TOURS. KAWA TRAINING INSTITUTE PLANS TO TRAIN AND EMPLOY CERTIFIED TOUR GUIDES AND EDUCATE PEOPLE ON THE HISTORY OF ZANZIBAR THROUGH BICYCLE TOURS.
The girl’s club was the first club formed at ZL4LF. Over the last year, Daraja volunteers have engaged with the club members to focus on women’s health issues, women’s empowerment, business education and activities such as sewing, craft making and partnership with Chakula Hai. Over the next few months, we will be creating a strong partnership with the newly formed Girls Club at EWQIP Hub, a Canadian organization focusing on the future of young women and men and supporting tangible skills and resources needed to become valued economic players. They have prepared a presentation that will be shared with our club, teaching us the importance and value of youth and women empowerment.
Arts and Culture Club
This year, the Arts & Culture Club has begun classes at Mazizni orphanage. Lead by a ZL4LF student and his colleague, both incredible artists. This club will start off with weekly volunteer driven classes for the youth at Mazizni with an aim to develop into a small student-run business venture and training club in Stone Town.
Through Global Bridges, this club is beaming with brilliant business and training ideas as his club grows with Hassan and Hussein leading it. Their art classes continue at Mazizni orphanage weekly and they are working on a business plan together. The plan includes paintings and drawings that are accompanied by a story which illustrates the history of East Africa.
Language & Culture Club
Hujambo Sijambo started with 3 members who had studied in the United States via a Rotary Club sponsorship. They are now fluent in English and Kiswahili, and they are already English teachers at ZL4LF. They formed this club to create a Kiswahili language course for volunteers, tourists and expats. The course is now ready to launch!
Daraja volunteers spent some time in Dar es Salaam at the end of the year visiting Theobald, founder of Red House School. One of our volunteers has been working with Theobald for 9 years, supporting his initiatives to empower youth through education. Her family's involvement in fundraising efforts and volunteering in Dar es Salaam has made a positive difference as Red House continues to grow. Donation’s through Daraja Foundation have gone towards construction within the school and we have plans to support the digging to support efforts on expanding organic gardening and poultry farming into a business that would support the school.
Mnazi Mmoja Hospital
Last year we replaced over 30 several mattresses, mounted over 15 blood pressure units, purchased medical supplies, equipment and assessment tools, including fetal dopplers, stethoscopes, scales, scrubs, a washer and dryer for gowns, a portable ultrasound machine, an operating table, an EKG, and more. This was all made possible through fundraising efforts in Calgary, donations from individual practitioners, FH canada and the Pure North S’Energy Foundation. This year we have pledged $2000 to Kanga Maternity Trust and Mnazi Mmoja Hospital Maternity Ward that will go towards equipment and supplies to help improve maternal health.
Volunteer nurses in Calgary for put newborn kits together for a maternity clinic in Chukwani, Zanzibar. Bicycles for Humanity kindly supported the transport of them by shipping them over with all the bikes! Volunteers from Victoria also brought medical supplies that were used by this hospital.
Fundraising to Continue Operations
This year we will have our Annual Gala in Calgary, details will be posted on our website and social media accounts soon! If you would like to make a donation towards our ongoing projects please visit our website www.darajafoundation.com.