Adult Education and Training Service Learning, Tanzania

Join us in a warm and welcoming village in Tanzania and work on a project that will impact the quality and provision of education and training programs for adults in rural communities. You will be involved in researching and mapping out the availability, accessibility and quality of education and vocational training programs for adults, particularly more vulnerable adults, in the Kilimanjaro region. You will also work on our current adult education projects and have time with education professionals to gain a deeper understanding of education in a developing country.

This project takes a holistic approach to researching adult education and training services, using a wide range of methods involving education professionals and community focus groups. At the end of your program, you will write up a summary report of your methods, findings and recommendations, as well as what you personally have learned from your time in Kilimanjaro.

Highlights

  • Live and work in a rural Tanzanian village
  • Learn conversational Swahili
  • Experience the traditional culture and way of life in Tanzania
  • Learn about the education system in a developing country, focusing on challenges and opportunities

Quick Facts

  • Location Live in the small town of Moshi, at the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro
  • Learning Takeaway Learn the local language of Swahili, taught by the traditional Maasai tribe
  • Learning Experience Gain a deeper understanding of education in a developing country
  • Free Time Summit the famous Mount Kilimanjaro and explore local wildlife areas

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Destination Description

Your home during your placement will be Moshi, a small town situated below the majestic Kilimanjaro mountain range. One of the most iconic attractions in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro is the continent’s highest peak, and an incredible sight. Blessed with this view, the busy tourist town of Moshi is a bustling network of food markets and restaurants, with an impressive array of colors, smells, and sounds. Undoubtedly, the most iconic inhabitants of Moshi are the Maasai, a traditional warrior tribe who will impress you with their vibrant culture and warm nature.

The area is also rich in wildlife. With monkeys in the trees and lizards sunning themselves on the rocks in your garden, living here is a perfect balance between integrating with the Tanzanians and enjoying the incredible natural setting. During time off, you’ll have the opportunity to visit some of the nearby national parks for spectacular game viewing. You could, for instance, venture to the famous Serengeti and encounter lions, elephants, and rhinos – and, if you’re lucky, you might even witness the hugely impressive Great Wildebeest Migration.

Learning Outcomes

There are five core components of this program, namely service, reflection, communication, research and course work. On arrival in Kilimanjaro, you will undergo a thorough orientation and induction program to gain an overview of life in the village and of the program itself. You will then embark on your service learning journey, working on the projects, carrying out your research and learning about the culture and education landscape in Tanzania. The program will finish with personal and group reflections, as well as presentations on your research and findings.

You will be fully supported throughout your program by our project staff. They will help you design your research methodology, shape your program, assist you in preparing for your service elements and guide you with infinite amounts of local knowledge. All logistics will be arranged for you.

Upon completion of your program, you will:

  • Have a deep understanding of the adult education and training landscape in Tanzania
  • Have gained social research methodology skills and learned how to apply them in a practical sense
  • Feel comfortable analyzing your data and information and extract recommendations from your findings
  • Have an appreciation for the Swahili language and culture

Service Impact

Many students in Tanzania do not complete high school. One of the main reasons for this is that the formal education system requires students to switch from their local dialect, Swahili in Primary School to English when they arrive in Secondary School. Particularly for low income communities who do not have an advanced level of English, the strict examinations make attaining a high school diploma difficult. Economic pressure on these communities result in many students leaving school to earn a living for their household. The unfortunate outcomes are seen in employment statistics, with 94% of Tanzania’s adult population relying on the informal work sector for a meager income, which perpetuates the cycle.

This program is designed to describe the current availability, quality and accessibility of education and training programs for adults in the project area. The research undertaken during your placement will inform recommendations for African Impact to further develop and improve our own adult education program, as well as for the local government to take into consideration.

With a mix of time working on our adult education programs, researching within the community on education programs in general and time together as a group looking at the more academic side of things, your approach to this placement will be holistic and cross-cutting. You will not only assist the local community through your research and findings, but also learn about the differences in your own education system as compared to Tanzania.

Our adult education programs, which you will work on as part of your service element, include the following:

Maasai Literacy Program: adult members of the Maasai tribe are nomadic agriculturalists and have never been to school as they would have been put in charge of their first herd of cattle or goats from the age of 4. However, life is changing rapidly and they need to be able to read and write to develop their livelihoods. We teach them basic literacy skills on this program for this purpose.

Adult English Education: most people in rural communities cannot speak English; however they recognize that this is a key skill if they wish to broaden their employment opportunities, particularly in a tourism-rich area like Kilimanjaro. We teach English to adults at all levels in our community.

Women’s education and income generation: we work with a women’s group made up of young single mothers and widows on education topics selected by them, such as maternal health, nutrition and basic business skills. We also run income-generation activities to help them support their families as head of household.

  • WEEK 1:

    Your first week will comprise an in-depth orientation where you will meet the various stakeholders, familiarize yourself with your schedule and set expectations. An introduction into the local language, culture and relevant history of the area will provide key context to the subject matter.

    By the end of the first week, you will have a sound understanding of the subject matter and concepts to be explored. Your first reflection will ensure you are prepared for the activities in week two.

  • WEEK 2:

    In week two, you will settle into your routine and develop a keener understanding of how the five elements of your placement; service, reflection, communication, course work and research integrate.

    A meeting with your program adviser will ensure that you are prepared with a concept note for your research paper by the end of week two.

  • WEEK 3:

    After two weeks on your placement, you will have the requisite skills and contextual knowledge to deepen your inquiry. In your third week you will undertake research to develop your concept note in preparation of your presentation, which provides an opportunity to reflect on your personal development thus far.

    Meetings with your program adviser will guide your progress.

  • WEEK 4:

    Your final week will be geared towards the refinement of your paper as you prepare for your presentation. You will also prepare a handover document to ensure that your contribution to the project continues.

    Your program adviser will provide a consolidated review of your research, and your contributions to the various elements of the broader program

Dates:
Available February through November

You will be based at African Impact’s house, exclusively for use by African Impact’s participants, in the village of Mdawi, which is six kilometres from Moshi. The house is very comfortable, with shared en-suite bedrooms, hot showers and Wi-Fi. The on-site chef and program coordinators will ensure that you have everything you need for a fantastic stay during your placement

  • Participants will be collected from the airport upon arrival and transferred to base
  • Accommodation on base will be simple, but comfortable shared rooms with communal ablutions
  • All meals for the duration of the project, with the exception of free days will be provided
  • Any transport required for program activities will be provided
  • Participants will be transferred back to the airport for their departure