It is my great pleasure to announce that we are now reaching the end of Tariro’s 10th year of work educating Zimbabwean girls! As we reflect back on our history of an organization, and look toward our future, we are making some big changes in the way we operate, allowing us to extend hope – the very meaning of the word Tariro – to another generation of young women in Zimbabwe.
Sustainability and “Founders’ Syndrome”
Just before founding Tariro in 2003, I was honored to attend a weekend workshop designed to encourage Zimbabwean students studying abroad to contribute to social development back home. I will never forget listening to one particularly inspiring speaker at the conference, who spoke about the pitfalls of “founders’ syndrome,” in which the identity of an organization becomes so wrapped up with one individual’s personality that the organization is unable to sustain a life of its own after the departure of its founder.
Over the years, I have kept this important principle in mind. It has always been my desire to create a structure that will enable Tariro to keep working long into the future, regardless of my own personal involvement. Today, I am pleased to announce one important step in making this a reality, with the hiring of a new Executive Director.
Introducing Kenny Magwada – Tariro’s New Executive Director
After an intensive search process, we are pleased to introduce Kenneth Tafadzwa Magwada, who will act as Tariro’s new Executive Director. With a BA in English from the University of Zimbabwe, Kenny is leaving a teaching job at Eaglerise College, a private school in Harare, and stepping into the role of Executive Director. Yet Kenny isn’t new to Tariro –he has been volunteering with us for more than a year, after initially finding out about us through our blog. Kenny will be filling two big sets of shoes, by taking over many of the responsibilities I have previously held, as well as much of the work that has previously fallen to our program coordinator, Fadzie Muzhandu, who is leaving Tariro for a new consulting job.
The importance of male allies
While it may appear paradoxical for Tariro’s new Executive Director to be a man, Kenny’s powerful dedication to the struggle for women’s education and equality makes him an important male ally in our work. As he wrote in his job application:
As a man, coordinating the activities for an organization for the empowerment of girls, will help buttress the need for men to be actively involved in the gender mainstreaming process…. Gender related myths need to be debunked and current efforts to mainstream gender in every aspect of life need to be given total support by policy makers, private and public institutions as well as by individuals.
Hope for the next ten years…
Please join me in congratulating Kenny as he moves into the role of Executive Director, and in supporting his work with Tariro! If you have any questions about how this transitional process will unfold, please feel free to contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org