Without Borders...

Abby and Sara have been best friends since they met in the dorms at Colorado State University in 2002. Each year since then, they have been on at least one trip together, with the last few years consisting of backpacking travels through Europe.

In 2010, they decided to put their desire to see the world towards a more constructive cause. Instead of taking an adventurous vacation, they chose to visit Tanzania and volunteer with Light in Africa for five weeks.

This winter, they are going back to Light in Africa to volunteer for another five weeks, and can't wait to see how much "their" kids have grown!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Real Feeling of Need

I use the word “need” all the time, and like everyone else around here – I rarely actually require anything.  The word “need” for those involved in keeping Light in Africa running however is not an exaggeration, it’s an understatement.

Abby and I recently received a very large and generous donation (more on that later), so we thought we’d ask Mama Lynn if we could break from their standard volunteer donation procedure, and get them a chunk of our pledged $3500 now, rather than when we arrive this November.  She very quickly said they could use the money and when she explained why, I heard the need in her words. 

One of my favorite things about Light in Africa is their interest in being self sustainable.  For the most part, they grow their own crops and raise their own herds, all in the interest of making sure they have plenty of food for their kids, and to provide additional jobs for their communities.  In Mama Lynn’s most recent blog post, she talks about how the lack of rain has affected their crops and their Tudor Village site.

The Kilimanjaro rejoin of Tanzania typically has two rainy seasons, and unfortunately, those rains haven’t been enough.  As this article warned in July, the Kilimanjaro region of Tanzania is now in a “critical period” due to the drought.  The maize (corn) they've tried to grow has either wilted, or was never able to grow in the first place.  The people who operate Light in Africa are now forced to dip into their reserves to make sure their kids get fed.  I think the worst consequence right now though, is that they may be forced to cut back, or even close, the food kitchen they run in the tanzanite mining town of Mirerani.

If you think you have an expensive grocery bill, think about what it costs to feed 350 children, three meals a day, seven days a week.  Now, think how much food it takes to feed 400 more kids, one meal a day, five days a week?  The $1000 donation Abby and I received a few weeks ago was transferred to Light in Africa’s Moshi bank account last Thursday, and it will all go to purchase food for their kids, because as we all know, with a shortage comes an increase in cost.

The moral of this very long post?  If you can, please give something.   Five dollars to you doesn’t mean much, but five dollars in Africa can mean life or death.  Donate directly to Light in Africa, or donate though our Fundly page, and we’ll make sure it’s used as efficiently as possible.   

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Fundraising has begun!

Hi Blog Followers!

Feels good to be back on the blog front, but even better to back blogging for our cause.

Two years ago, Sara and I did a "once-in-lifetime" thing. Volunteering at Light in Africa - to say the least - changed us both. So much so that we couldn't make this "thing" once. (This is a standing joke with us both, as we always tell ourselves - eh, might as well, we'll only do this once). And we are volunteering once again for our cause.

Two years ago, we also asked for your help, your support for our cause. I've said our cause now 3 times. In fact, its not really "our cause", is it? It's about the amazing people, the amazing community, the amazing children we met in Tanzania - you might think, their cause? Well, the truth is, once you do the "once-in-a-lifetime" thing, it becomes your cause - your passion - your life maybe.

So now, we again are asking for your support for our cause. Not our trip. Not our flights - none of that. We again are raising funds for the people who need it most in the big scheme of things. For those of you that made this your cause, too, or maybe would like to - we look forward to your support. Either on our FUNDLY page, where you will find more details about what we are raising money for or contact us personally.

More activities planned, so stay tuned!