The Happiness Project in Tanzania – It was the start of our safari weekend. We were all excited and hyper focused on this upcoming activity. What we did not know is we were going to encounter a much more meaningful experience before reaching our finally destination.
Three hours into our trip we took a turn into what could only be described as a dirt field with no marked path. We travelled on this field for approximately 1 kilometre then stopped at a what looked like a little village. This was the Folk Development College. It is in the village of MTO WA MBU.
There are 55 of these rural colleges throughout Tanzania. The funding for these colleges is contributed by the Tanzanian government. The main purpose is to promote secondary education in rural areas. Folk Development College preps citizens for entry level positions by teaching them basic skills including culinary skills and computer technology.
The Folk Development College is a non-traditional learning program with some courses as short as 3 months. They have day students as well as housing for students and teachers on site.
Our faculty and students had the honor of getting a tour from the principal, Mr. Temba. We viewed the classrooms, technology room and new kitchen. They had ample desks for the students, the technology room consisted of 4 computers and the new kitchen was bright and airy. They previously were working in an outdoor kitchen with a shelter above their heads.
Mr. Tamba’s college was warm and inviting. We were greeted with smiles and many Jambo’s. They had prepared a large traditional meal for us and made us feel very welcome.
Tanzania has the warmest hospitality I have ever encountered. The people are inviting, patient and loving. They go out of their way to ensure you are comfortable and well feed. Their smiles are infectious. I will be leaving a piece of my heart in Tanzania for its citizens and culture.