Tag Archives: HIV/AIDS

Wolves in sheep’s clothing devouring women

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Women forced to eating grass at the behest of their pastor. (picture courtesy of Christian Post)

“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits…” This verse from the Bible shouts out aloud as I behold the nefarious deeds that are being done to women by pastors under the guise of Christianity. Media reports are awash with these so called men of God who are abusing their posts to abuse women.

Recently in Zimbabwe we have had a pastor being jailed for 40 years for raping a number of his female congregants. The pastor is also on record for owning every woman in his church.

Another “shepherd” has been doing horrendous deeds to his flock by making them eat grass as well as physically assaulting them. The major sufferers here are women again.

Others have flagrantly molested young girls, thus betraying the trust they have been given. On record again are some pastors who use their influential positions to satisfy their perverted whims.

One is left wondering why all these regressive things are happening to women, especially in this day and age of women enlightenment and empowerment. Surely there is still a long way to go and the struggle is far from being over till women are totally emancipated. Indeed the battle fronts are ever-increasing, we have to fight against HIV/AIDS on another fronts while poverty and economic hardship on another and  it is saddening that crooked ideologies are still rearing their ugly heads on another front.

Please share your thoughts as to why these things are happening and how best they can be tackled.

Tariro founder’s insightful post on Ethnomusicology website.

This week we share a post by Tariro’s founder Jennifer Kyker on the ethnomusicology website. We get to see why sound matters in the fight to empower women in the face of HIV/AIDS and other challenges.

http://www.ethnomusicology.org/blogpost/1002374/Sound-Matters-The-SEM-Blog

A must read for those of you interested in Tariro, traditional music and the upliftment of the girl child.

Highlights from 2013!

Tatenda C

On behalf of the board, staff and beneficiaries of Tariro, I would like to wish everyone a prosperous 2014. This is a time to reflect on the past year as well as determine our course of action. And a chance to let me also take this opportunity to thank those of you who have been standing with us from the years beyond. We have had a good year in 2013 – a milestone year which saw us reach ten years of committed service to the upliftment and empowerment of the girl child through education.

Our wonderful last year

The previous year ended with us scoring a number of successes. One of our students, Tatenda C, graduating with an Honours Degree from the University of Zimbabwe. We also had two grade seven students passing with flying colours in their national examinations. A number of our girls also received awards for academic excellence in their respective schools. The year also saw us have the largest number of students enrolled in Universities across Zimbabwe in our history as an organization.

We have also managed to keep all of our girls in school and none has dropped out due to lack of tuition and /or supplies. The students have continued to enjoy the full range of our programme activities.

It’s you who made it possible!

It is at this point that I express profound gratitude to you for the support you have rendered in helping our girls attain these accomplishments. We would not have managed to achieve the aforementioned had it not been for your unwavering support and commitment to the Tariro cause. In the same spirit, I would like to plead with you to continue supporting us as we drive towards the empowerment of the girl child and women through education. Your support has always been vital and will continue being so.

We look forward to another successful year ahead

We are just beginning a new year, 2014, and our mission will remain focused on the importance of women’s education as an effective response to the AIDS epidemic. With the perpetual rise of urban and rural poverty in Zimbabwe, many girls are dropping out of school thus putting them at a higher risk of contracting HIV. We believe education can reverse this negative cycle, since attending school dramatically reduces the risk that a young Zimbabwean woman might have of becoming infected with HIV/AIDS. By educating young women, Tariro empowers them to build a future free from poverty and disease.

This year we are looking at strengthening our existing programs and exploring new ones. One area of note is vocational training. We would like those of our girls who do not make it academically to be armed with vocational skills to sustain them and their communities. In addition, we hope to touch more lives by expanding our area of operation to even the remotest parts of Zimbabwe by year end. This year we are bent on unrolling a package of total empowerment for every beneficiary within our ranks and we will leave no stone unturned to achieve this end.

Tariro needs your help

Yet, we know that any year is not devoid of its challenges. The plans that we have cannot be actualised without adequate financial and material resources. Given the harsh economic conditions we are operating in your continual support is much needed. Your donation, whether in cash or kind, can go a long way in empowering a girl child. You will not only be empowering her but also restoring hope to a society that has been ravaged by the HIV/AIDS scourge. With your support, there will not be any challenge that will be insurmountable.

On behalf of all Tariro’s students, families, and volunteers, let me wish you a successful 2014 ahead. Tariro means hope, and hope is what our girls have, hope is what sustains us. Let 2014 be a year of hope, and a year of empowerment for every one of you. Thank you.

Kenny Magwada

An update on Noleen

Noleen C., pictured with Tariro's new director Kenny Magwada at St. Giles school

Noleen C., pictured with Tariro’s new director Kenny Magwada at St. Giles school

In today’s post, Tariro’s new director Kenny Magwada takes the helm, with an update on our student Noleen C.

For those of you who have not previous met her, Noleen has a medical condition known as spina bifida, which confines her to a wheelchair.  Several years ago, Noleen experienced physical complications from her condition, which required special care.

Thanks to generous donations from YOU, our sponsor, Tariro was able to transfer Noleen to  St. Giles, a school that is capable of attending to her special needs. Since her arrival she has taken well to this environment and her headmistress describes her as a “good, honest and loving girl.”

Recently, we had a few moments with Noleen. She seems a shy and reserved girl (or it could be that she was seeing us for the first time). She smiled heartily when her teacher told her that we were the ones from Tariro and responsible for her education. Noleen expressed her gratitude by thanking us.

Because Noleen had limited access to education before enrolling in Tariro, she is still struggling to catch up in school, and at fourteen years of age she is currently enrolled in grade four. However, Noleen has made great strides with her physical therapy during her time at St. Giles, including taking her first steps unassisted. Noleen continues to face an uphill battle in her studies. She also struggles with loneliness, as her family rarely comes to visit her during the school term. Yet she has particularly enjoyed the opportunity to participate in special activities at St. Giles, and her teachers note that she has become a “pro” in wheelchair racing.

As we approach the beginning of a new school year in Zimbabwe, I encourage you to donate in support of Tariro’s work with students such as Noleen. While the amount we need to raise for 2014 is large – about $40,000 – even a small gift can have a major impact in the lives of our students. For example:

  • $30 will provide a student with school supplies (pens, paper, and sanitary ware) for the year.
  • $80 will provide a student with a new uniform, including shoes, socks, pants/skirt, shirt and tie.
  • $100 will cover the annual cost for a student to participate in Tariro’s music and dance ensemble.
  • $150 will enable a student to write her Ordinary Level exams.

It is also worth looking into finding out if the company that you or a spouse works for matches non-profit gifts, as that is an opportunity to make your gift count double!

You can donate to Tariro online, or mail your donations directly to PO Box 50273, Eugene, OR, 97405. Thank you for your support, and happy holidays!!

Exams are Underway!

We’re excited to share that we have several students completing their O and A level exams this year. The exams are taking place right now, from late October to late November, and are a chance for the students to prove their knowledge in various given subjects.

“Ordinary level” exams take place after Form 4 while “Advanced Level” take place after Form 6. A deeper explanation of how the school system works in Zimbabwe can be found here.

This year, we have 5 students taking their A-levels, and 10 taking their O-levels! Please join us in wishing our A and O Level students the best of luck on their exams!

A-Level students

Nicole M.

Nicole M.

Jane J.

Edwinner S.

Edwinner S.

Not pictured: Tracy G., Jestina T.

O-Level

Chido C.

Chido C.

Loveness M.

Loveness M.

Gillian M.

Gillian M.

Rosa S.

Rosa S.

Julia M.

Julia M.

Pride R.

Pride R.

Not pictured: Vimbai C., Rumbidzai M., Charmaine M., Winston N.

 

Aside

Meet Patience, a teacher at Chinhoyi High School: She was kind enough to let me, as the UR’s student intern, ask her some questions about how education in Zimbabwe is currently working, and how it affects her.  Her comments were … Continue reading

Hello! From Tariro’s New Intern

Hello followers of the Tariro blog! My name is Amelia and I’m the new intern.
Amelia Picture

Some Background

I’m attending the University of Rochester which is home to the Susan B. Anthony Institute for Gender and Women’s Studies. Through this department, I am able to help out Tariro and receive University credit.   Although I’m studying for a degree in Biochemistry, I have always been interested in issues of social justice, and have incorporated Women’s Studies classes into my schedule to get a more informed opinion.

Social Justice through Education

It has always bothered me that the family, geographical region, and culture someone was born into has such an influence on their ability to succeed and live comfortably.

Socio-economic differences within the western world alone seem to have quite an effect on the opportunities available to individuals, but being disadvantaged in the western world is quite different than being disadvantaged in the third world. Western teens accustomed to privilege may choose to not take their education seriously, because they have options to fall back on, whether it be support from parents, family, or society.

However, in areas of Africa the ability to attend school may be the only opportunity to improve your family’s socioeconomic standing and to provide your siblings with some security.

My Motivations in Working with Tariro

I’m privileged enough to be receiving an education, and so it only seems fair that I take advantage of my resources to help provide educational opportunities to individuals who weren’t born into the same circumstances.

I think Tariro is particularly effective in addressing social justice because it recognizes the interplay between the HIV/AIDS epidemic and education.  Prior to looking at the Tariro website, I hadn’t realized the extent education plays in combating transmission. Yet this quote from the Global Coalition on Women and AIDS says it all:

Evidence from Zimbabwe shows that among 15-18 year old girls, those who are enrolled in school are more than five times less likely to have HIV than those who have dropped out.

If education can help reduce the spread of HIV, and a reduced impact of HIV means that more teens are able to get an education, then a strong effort should be taken to get this virtuous cycle started if we hope to improve the living conditions of individuals in HIV affected regions. I would very much like to be a part of this effort and am excited to get started working with Tariro to make this change happen.

I plan on updating the blog regularly, so keep a look out for future posts!