Your gift of clean water has ripple effects

In the western world, it’s so accessible you almost forget what a miracle it is, flowing out of taps in every building and every city. But in rural northern Tanzania clean water is a precious commodity, and far too many people have limited access to it.
Women and girls pay the toll for this life-giving necessity, often trekking hours each way to collect water that may not be safe to drink. The journey is dangerous, leaving them open to possible violence, and it keeps them from pursuing an education, entering the workforce, or otherwise gaining more independence. And of course, at the end of these arduous journeys, the water might be contaminated and result in devastating illnesses.

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You're making clean water a reality for thousands of Tanzanians.

Thanks to your donations, FoTZC has been able to drill six new boreholes in the most remote regions of northern Tanzania. Your generosity has given over 5,000 Maasai—in particular the girls and women previously tasked with water collection—the gift of better health and crucially, time. Time that these women are using to start small businesses and care for their children. Time that the girls can reclaim for schooling and studying. Time spent free from the worry and illness that was robbing them of opportunity every single day.
With your continued generosity through, we’ll give that gift to thousands more Tanzanians. At a cost of about $40,000 each, boreholes are a significant investment, but they pay huge dividends that ripple through entire communities. That’s why we’re committed to providing two new boreholes each year for the next several years.

Thanks to you, this World Water Day is refreshing and bright for thousands of Tanzanians. And with your continued generosity, we can spread that precious gift to countless more.

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International Women's Day - Focus on Maasai Women in Tanzania

Thursday, March 8 is International Women's Day and FoTZC would like to congratulate women all over the world for continuing to make great strides forward.  And congratulations to you, our donors, for supporting COCOBA, the economic development program that provides women with the skills and confidence to start and run their own businesses. 
You have invested in women who have received little prior education, who now see themselves as entrepreneurs and valuable members of their communities. This is powerful, as these women have had few opportunities for employment and have not seen themselves as having much impact in a patriarchal society.  Many of these COCOBA women now speak up and participate in decision-making,  especially on issues related to basic social needs.

The program is based on the principles of COmmunity COnservation BAnking, a microfinance method centered on conservation-minded businesses. The profits the women make are reinvested in the program and are used as loans for other women. These lending groups also have community health care funds and social funds to take care of those in extreme financial need.

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Because of you:

  • 234 Maasai women now manage their own environmentally-friendly businesses, up from only five before our COCOBA program started two years ago.
  • In the four initial groups started in 2016, the women have increased their group financial pools by more than 400%.
  • The women spend their profits on school fees, school uniforms, textbooks and supplies, food and medical care.
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On International Women’s Day, you can be proud of how you’ve contributed to changing the lives of these women. And as a member of our FoTZC family, please join us in celebrating the successes of these Maasai women and women worldwide.

Click here to support Focus on Tanzanian Communities.

We Did It!

At the beginning of the summer we set out to raise $50,000, a sum that would be matched dollar-for-dollar by a generous donor. This money was targeted to help fulfill a promise that FoTZC made to the people of Oloipiri Ward -- five new boreholes, to provide water to 3,000 community members. It is with the utmost gratitude that we thank all of our donors who helped keep this promise to our friends in Oloipiri Ward. Over the course of three months, donations poured in from across the U.S., as well as Tanzania! In total, we raised over $131,000!

District Medical Officer, Dr. Omari Sukari, discusses the need for clean water in rural Tanzania.

Your dollars are already hard at work! We recently piped water from the Sukenya Medical Dispensary to Sukenya Primary School, and we're in the process of drilling two additional boreholes in Sukenya, and a third in Mondorosi.

On behalf of our friends in Oloipiri Ward, asante sana for your part in providing these boreholes for much needed water.

Our Boots on the Ground

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Have you ever wondered how Focus on Tanzanian Communities monitors and supports all of the projects and contractors that we work with in Tanzania? Well, let us introduce you to our boots on the ground, Elizabeth Mwakajila. 

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Elizabeth joined the FoTZC in 2016 and serves as the organization's eyes and ears in Tanzania. Fluent in both English and Swahili, Elizabeth is as a conduit between the FoTZC board of directors and local contractors, village elders, and elected officials. As Projects Administrator, Elizabeth ensures that construction projects and programs stay on track, and through monitoring and evaluations, that our donors' dollars are spent responsibly. 

Born in Iringa, Tanzania, and educated at Mzumbe University, Elizabeth is a lifelong resident of the country. She has a background in marketing, community development, with a focus on supporting women's entrepreneurship, and is very interested in economic development and training for her fellow Tanzanians. Given our work in these areas, she couldn't be a better fit for the position. Elizabeth brings a unique perspective to our work and we are incredibly lucky to have her on our team. 

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