Throughout my travels, I have discovered the joy and rewards of giving back to communities all over the world. When I dreamt of Live Your Best Life, donating a portion of the profits to organizations that empower men, women, and children in impoverished regions was always a part of the plan. I chose these two organizations based on my love for education and empowerment. I encountered both organizations during my volunteer experience in Moshi, Tanzania, and saw the powerful impact of their work firsthand.
In November, the LYBL team will be returning to Moshi, Tanzania to further develop our partnership and help them achieve their goals.
If you would like to get involved, learn more, or donate, please contact us.
Give a Heart to Africa
Moshi, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
The mission of Give a Heart to Africa (GHTA) is to empower the women of Tanzania by offering free english, business, math, and vocational skills. As a result many women are able to secure more lucrative employment allowing them to better support their families. Each year in December, GHTA recruits 50 new students to enrol in 12 months of free studies. The following January, a few select women become entrepreneurs and start their own
small independent enterprise. Those 9 weeks in Africa were an amazing experience for me, and each day was filled with practice and encouragement.
After weeks of teaching and learning followed by final exams, my time there concluded with a beautiful and heart-warming graduation ceremony. Living in the volunteer house with my fellow teachers allowed me to develop both bonds and ideas regarding the life of the female students after they graduated GHTA. From this, the “Grad Program” idea was born, and has since come to life. We selected a few of the top students in the class, with inventive and entrepreneurial abilities, and aided in setting them up for independent success.
At this time, I can report that two successful businesses have started and are flourishing with the third one in the infant stages.
Yulita’s Corner Store
Veridiana’s Foods and Clothing Store.
Asia’s Rice Shop (in progress)
We continue to make progress in Africa every day, and I could not be more proud of these women and what they are pushing themselves to achieve. It’s an honour to be able to collaborate with people who in return inspire and empower you. I feel blessed that my father inspired me to visit Africa so many years ago, allowing my life to intertwine with the women of GHTA.
Excel Education Foundation
Moshi, Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Excel Education Foundation (EEF) is an organization giving impoverished children a pathway to public education. Even though the school fees of $200/year (fees, books, uniform and one meal per day) are minimal by our standards, they are an impossibility for many in Africa. In Moshi, a good full time wage is $45/month, which barely provides food and housing for a family of four.
Many of the children have lost one or both parents due to an illness or death, and are growing up with neighbours or relatives. These children are destined for a life of hard labour or street begging unless education remains an option.
The Excel Education Foundation works to create a pathway for these children in Africa to escape the cycle of poverty and create future opportunities. My dream of making direct impact comes to life by connecting with each individual and bringing a real measurable change into their lives. We hope to inspire all twelve of them, to not only believe in themselves and the power of others, but to also inspire the will and desire for change of others in their community.
Meet some of the EEF children...
Currently, LYLB sponsors 12 children at the foundation. We hope to continue to expand that number and work on projects to fund more educational resources.
Merry Hussein – Age Unknown
Merry is enrolled in Grade 3 at Pasua Primary School. As a child, Merry and her brother were abandoned by her mother, which is why she is unsure exactly how old she is. She lives in a 3 room house with 13 other people, one of them being her primary caregiver – her grandmother. Despite the hardships, Merry thoroughly enjoys school and her favourite subject is science. She’s incredibly bright and currently ranked sixth in her class standings. Through the support of the school and her sponsorship, Merry continues to work hard to reach for a better future for herself. She says she hopes to one day be the President of Tanzania so she can make a positive impact.
Amiri Seleman – Nine
Amiri is studying in the third grade at Azimio Primary. He is diligent about attending all of his classes, even through the walk to school takes him several hours. His grandparents are his primary care givers, as we are unsure the location of his parents. His family struggles with school fees, books, food, and clothing, but through sponsorship he has been able to access all of these necessities that he was unable to obtain before.
Aneth Emmanuel – Age: 9
Aneth is a very diligent and determined girl. She attends Shirimatunda Primary School and is currently the 22nd best student in a class of 100. Aneth recently lost her mother, so her caregiver is her 81-year-old grandmother. In her home, there is no electricity but Aneth still completes her chores of washing the families clothes, tending to the animals, and working on her studies. Through sponsorship and hard work, Aneth’s future remains bright and incredibly promising.