Almost there...

After a day and half of travelling we're exhausted but happy to have made it to Tanzania! We overnight in Dar Es Salam and then head to Bukoba early tomorrow. We can't wait to meet everyone and get moving on things...lots to do! But the best part about our visit will be meeting the children of Bukoba – both at the Orphanage and within the community. We also hope to visit the children from the GOEC Neighborhood project, some of whom still need sponsors. If you would like to know more about this program or you would like to help secure the education for these children, you can find out more how to sponsor them on the GOEC website.

Thinking back to one of our recent fundraising events which was aptly named: ‘Pamoja, Umoja Ni Nguvu’ (‘Together, Unity is Power’ in Swahili), I believe that in solidarity we can make change happen! It will be such a privilege to see this in action and to meet the children at the Orphanage as well as the schools and local community. As with my last stay in Africa a few years ago, there’s no doubt in my mind that we’ll gain a greater admiration for those who have laid the groundwork for this kind of change...empowering their own community from within.

I’ll be attempting to blog at least every few days - although each post will be much shorter from here on in! Internet may be unreliable and/or expensive, but regardless; I plan to post more info/photo’s when we return to Canada. My hope is that through photo’s/updates about our time spent with the children, the work and lives of those at the Centre and in the community, and about some of the amazing people and sights we encounter in this beautiful country, people will become more aware about the work of GOEC and of other ‘change-makers’ in Africa...there are certainly plenty of inspiring people here! I also hope to encourage those that support GOEC or those who help with a similar cause by giving a glimpse into the lives that are being transformed, evident in the healthy and radiant smiles of the children.

After our visit to GOEC, Derek and I will be spending the remainder of June travelling throughout Tanzania. Included in photos/posts during this time, I hope to blog about the incredible places we visit such as a guest house that supports street children in Mwanza and another in Zanzibar that supports Local Sustainable Economic Development through Community programs.

If this ignites a better understanding for the importance of what we are working for & motivates others to get involved (whether with GOEC or another cause or organization), and more people catch this contagious love for Africa, then my posts will be more than worthwhile!

In closing for today, I’ll remark on the latest entry from my blog from my journey to Zambia/Botswana in late 2008:

"For our last morning in Namununga I write...

So this is goodbye...this has been an unforgettable journey for which I am so grateful to have been part of, and I have no doubt in mind this will not be my last time here. Africa has always had a hold on my heart for as long as I can remember, and now my blood runs thick with the desire to return. As an African-born friend of mine told me before I headed over to this incredible country: ‘I know you will love Africa Miranda, and Africa will love you back’...a love that became so real and overwhelmed me more than I ever dreamed possible. So this is a very reluctant and temporary goodbye –or ‘Salani bwino’ – until next we meet again!". Thank you, Steve, for preparing me for this love that has consumed me ever since. A love that has become that of a dear and old friend, changing my life and my future forever. I’m so grateful that each time I leave I’ll say temporary farewells...this time in Swahili: "Tutaonana badaaye" – "See you later"...we will see each other again soon!

Thanks for checking in everyone - stay tuned for updates on our first day with the kids of GOEC!

Mungu Awabariki, God Bless,

Miranda

"Pure and Undefied Religion is to Care for Orphans" James 1:27