The house in Harare run by the Tariro Youth Project (TYP) with its 17 young people has been a really great success. The boys and girls are growing up well, healed from their traumatic pasts and looking forward to a bright future. Some already have
jobs. Many are coming to the end of tertiary education. They are a strong, secure and happy family. It’s a delight to see them together enjoying each other’s company and getting on well with outsiders, too. TYP really do seem to have discovered a way of doing this work that does transform youngsters’ lives and while they don’t have the capacity to increase the TYP further in terms of numbers (it works well at this size), they do want to help others to benefit from their model, in particular to the rural projects Tariro UK supports.
The young people Tariro UK supports through its beneficiaries in the rural areas are also splendid young people. Many have done really well in school despite awful living conditions at home and often abuse as well. So the plan is to bring them all together in Harare in April with the Harare lot and have a three day gathering at a youth centre where they can have a great time together, make lots of friends and discover they have a real family of brothers and sisters. Some will need professional counselling and that is to be arranged, although they are really good at counselling each other and it will be wonderful to see this in action. It will be good to provide a fair bit of English and maths coaching as well as that is where many of the younger kids struggle. However, mostly the idea is for them to have fun – they don’t get enough of that and, as we know, it’s incredibly important for confidence, development and building a better life for them in the future.
For most of the rural kids this will be their first sight of Harare, and probably their first experience of a real holiday. I can’t tell you how much it will mean for them to brighten up their lives. The youth centre has a swimming pool and the weather should be good. Rural kids can only swim in rivers or dams where they get bilharzia and maybe get taken by crocodiles and as a result most can’t swim, so we’ll pay for some swimming lessons as well. I saw a little of what this can mean in December when we took some of them out for chicken and chips and let them buy Christmas presents. They were so excited, it was amazing. This will be even better.
We are very pleased to be supporting this inaugural Tariro Youth Camp through both the Tariro Youth Project in Harare and the Tariro For Young People organisation in the rural areas, but it will of course need some additional funding. This is to cover salaries for teachers, payment for social and youth workers, rental of the youth camp facilities, some clothes and books especially for the rural kids, and their travel and sustenance. We hope to make a huge success out of it so it can be repeated every year.
If you’d like to contribute to this event, could you send a donation noting that it is for this cause – you can give through all the usual ways. We really want to give the young people a wonderful time. I will be leaving Yorkshire to go to Zimbabwe on March 17th.
Thank you so much. I know you will help us with this because you are all such stars!