Saturday, June 30, 2012

Lunch with President Kikwete at the State House

Another historic day for Powering Potential and personally an exciting one for me. (I'm in the second row with the turquoise shawl.)

Ambassador Maajar had invited me to join her VIP safari group of American business people for their activities in Dar es Salaam including dinner with President Kikwete. Plans changed and we had lunch instead of dinner with him at the State House today. A few of us were also invited to have our photos taken individually with the president. I'll get a copy of that photo later. President Kikwete referred to me as "Mama Karatu" and he complimented me on our work. I invited him to visit our project and he said the next time he's in Karatu he will come and visit. I also had a chance to tell the U.S. Ambassador to Tanzania more about Powering Potential. He gave us a grant in 2010.

In her remarks at lunch, which were videotaped, Ambassador Maajar mentioned Powering Potential by name. That video will eventually be on youtube. Ametupa heshima kubwa sana. (She has given us a very big honor.)

Tomorrow I join the group for Saba Saba, The International Trade Fair and then on Monday we fly to Zanzibar for activities there.

Stay tuned.....

Friday, June 29, 2012

Grant from the Tanzanian Rural Energy Agency

Today was another historic day for Powering Potential.

We signed a contract with the Tanzanian Rural Energy Agency, a division of the Ministry of Energy and Minerals. They awarded us a grant of  Tsh 13,517,874. That's Tanzanian shillings not U.S. dollars. It's equivalent to about $8,600.

Left to right: Janice Lathen (Powering Potential, Founding Executive Director) Eng. Msofe (Rural Energy Agency, Director for Technical Services)
Albin Mathias (Powering Potential, Country Director).

This grant will help cover the costs of The Technology Tent Phase 1 at Baray and Endallah Secondary Schools which will be implemented in October 2012.

I'm thrilled that a Tanzanian government agency is supporting our work.

If you want to go fast, go alone
If you want to go far, go together

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Ambassador Maajar visits Powering Potential

Today the Tanzanian Ambassador to the U.S. Ambassador Maajar (in black and white head scarf) and her VIP safari group of distinguished American business people visited a Powering Potential school (Banjika Secondary School in Karatu). She arrived with a police escort accompanied by the District Commissioner and other high level district officials. She gave an inspiring talk to the students. I showed them the computer lab and spoke to them about Powering Potential. They were very impressed with the educational content (RACHEL) which we have installed on the computers. It was an especially exciting day for us and everyone was very honored by her visit. A reporter from the Washington Times was part of the ambassador's group and he interviewed me and a few students.

Tomorrow morning I am off to Dar es Salaam for meetings and then on Saturday I will join the ambassador and her group for dinner with President Kikwete at the State House.

I arrived in Tanzania on June 19 and hit the ground running with meetings, technology issues, etc. I was a guest at the Arusha Rotary Club and had a chance to tell them briefly about our work. There is so much interest here in Powering Potential and the students and teachers are eager to learn about computers. Our work is cut out for us.

Stay tuned....