Happy New Year from us at Tumaini . . .

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2016 brought much to us at Tumaini this past year. . . we were blessed with a land cruiser (donations) and then lost it in a rollover accident . . . (thank God no one was hurt) . . .

Reward, our first Tumaini graduate bought his own safari vehicle and organizes all of our Tumaini safaris. Four of our kids graduated from primary school (Francis is top of our District) and will begin secondary school in January. Neema will attend Notre Dame in Arusha, Angela, Kifungilo Girls’ Secondary School near Tango, Francis has been invited to join the most prestigious boys’ secondary school in the country, (Ilboru Boys’), and Georgie will join Tengeru Boys’ Secondary School.

Rose graduated secondary school and is halfway through her first year of university studying education . . . Nelson, in 2018, will finish his undergraduate degree in agricultural engineering at Sokoine University in Morogoro.  Omari will finish secondary school next June and then is off to university! Godlove and Joseph are shining at Kisimiri Secondary school and we wait for performance results for Issa and Joseph (Form IV) and Vitalis (Lohai’s brother) (Form II). And speaking of Lohai, he became a husband and a father in 2016, with congratulatios to him and Joy on the birth of their baby girl Evalite . . . and Mary and Frank and Nicole (2 years old in May) welcomed little Kelvin into their family!  Mama Eva just had a little girl . . . I will send pictures when I meet her!

I marvel at how blessed we have been health wise this past year.  One HIV+ child had to change to second line ARV medication which is a concern, but all are otherwise healthy and strong and Tumaini Australia is working to find money for more frequent CD4/viral load testing . . . We had no broken limbs, no malaria, no serious illness in our family . . . no deaths . . . thank you Lord.

When you next visit us at Tumaini you will come to our NEW home!  I am writing this from my seat in the plane over north Africa, so we will land shortly and celebrate New Year’s with the children (can you imagine anything better?), then tomorrow (after our New Year’s celebration), we will begin packing and hope to be settled before the end of January!  We have TONS of space and monkeys (yes our monkeys will play with monkeys)!  You know, we keep feeding these children and they just keep growing!  They seriously needed more room and we can now give it to them!  A lot of work you say, moving our family?  Come, come . . . we’re only 65 . . .

Raymond continues to settle into his new role as Tumaini’s administrator . . . time will tell if this is his future as he endeavours to effectively manage his responsibilities and establish healthy working relationships with staff and children. And speaking of our children!    They are incredible!  I am beginning to see their developing characters, who they are becoming as human beings and this is my reward for seven years of hard work . . . Kind, supportive of each other, sharing, sensitive and concerned young people will contribute much in this world in their futures.  Some need to “pull up their socks” somewhat when it comes to academic performance but for the most part . . .

Our dada Tine from Belgium has been invaluable by assisting in the development of a more streamlined financial reporting system which allows better and faster communication, transparency and understanding. Tumaini Australia is working to find sponsorship for our milk campaign . . . Tumaini Holland not only helped us purchase our car, they raise funds in support of school fees (as does Belgium), salaries, sponsorship, etc. and Tumaini USA is developing as a strong support mechanism wherever we need them and to the boards of directors for these organizations thank you.

I consistently marvel and must reach out and thank each of you, our sponsors, our donors, our friends, some of whom have loved (and supported) us, all of these seven years.  Many of you sent me in August of 2009 with a contribution to what would develop into Tumaini . . . many of you have opened your hearts and your purses regularly since, in support of these blessed children.  This mama is very grateful.

 

As 2017 unfolds . . . as each of you set your goals, envision your dreams and make your plans for another new year, I hope you will take a second to pause and reflect upon the goodness you have provided us.  Nothing good will happen without you, without your hearts and your skills and yes, your money . . . but, WITH all of you, not only is hope, but EVERYTHING is possible!  Here’s to a 2017 full of EVERYTHING good . . . for you, for our children, for this world we live in . . . Happy New Year!!