Haruma Orphanage

I joined Anthony and Aurelien on a visit to Haruma Orphanage where Mak and Sam, two Mondo volunteers, are based. Not far from Arusha, Haruma has about 20 orphans ranging in age from around 3 to 20. The kids are a far cry from the heartrending images sent around the Western world in a bid for donations. The y look well-fed and have a lot of love and affection for everyone. Although there’s undoubtedly sadness and tragedy behind those smiles, it’s yet another example of how the people I’ve met in Tanzania get on with the business of each day.

We spent a couple of lovely hours there, being treated to a wonderfully funny performance that the Stage Spiders, a theatrical group from Leeds Uni, put together with the kids. The Stage Spiders have funded themselves to come over and work with the various Mondo projects, doing workshops with the kids which then culminate in a final performance. Talking to them, I found out that they had expected a much higher level of English from the kids and also a lot more in the way of props. Their imaginations and flexibility were tested and proved excellent in finding alternative ways to work. The result was lovely; it was wonderful to see the kids thoroughly enjoy themselves.

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