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Partnership key to a brighter future

Amani was born with brittle bone disease and was unable to complete primary school. He has worked at Shanga since early 2013.
Amani was born with brittle bone disease and was unable to complete primary school. He has worked at Shanga since early 2013.

Hand-in-hand, St Jude’s and Shanga are bringing hope to Tanzania’s future.

The two organisations share a vision for a better Tanzania, with Shanga providing supportive jobs to people with disabilities and St Jude’s giving under-privileged students a free, high-quality education.

“The partnership between Shanga and St Jude’s has developed through mutual respect of each other’s work,” Shanga General Manager Amy Tew said.

“For a long time, Shanga has welcomed visitors from St Jude’s and greatly admired the work they are doing to give opportunities to people who are disadvantaged. By working with disabled people, or by educating those who cannot afford school, we are both striving to help people achieve independence and be in control of their lives without relying on handouts.”

Great partnership: St Jude's makes it a priority to help other organisations, like Shanga, committed to make a difference for people in Tanzania.
Great partnership: St Jude’s makes it a priority to help other organisations, like Shanga, committed to make a difference for people in Tanzania.

One such person is Amani (pictured), whose life has been improved immensely by opportunities from this partnership.

Amani was born with brittle bone disease and was unable to complete primary school as he was in and out of hospital throughout his young life. He fortunately had the opportunity to study tailoring at a vocational training school, and was employed at Shanga in early 2013.

“Amani is very creative and enjoys the designing aspect of his work,” Amy said, adding that his role focuses on making jewellery using different types of beads.

“I really like working at Shanga, especially working with other people who have disabilities,” he said.

“Working at Shanga has helped me overcome lots of challenges in my life and makes me very happy.”

Helping those in need: Shanga provides opportunities to people with disabilities.
Helping those in need: Shanga provides opportunities to people with disabilities.

Amani dreams of creating his own business to employ disabled people, and is planning to buy land this year to start working towards his dream.

It is part of St Jude’s philosophy to help our students, and other organisations and individuals in our community, work towards solutions to overcome the problems facing Tanzania.

Since its establishment in 2002, St Jude’s has become a pioneering leader in East African charitable education, providing a free education to the most impoverished bright students in Arusha, Tanzania.

Founder Gemma Sisia makes it a priority to help and partner with other organisations who share the same goals of helping disadvantaged people in Tanzania.

The Shanga Kanga necklace is the perfect symbol of this partnership towards change for a better future.

Shanga has sold the special necklace, which uses the St Jude’s Motif Kanga (designed by St Jude’s students and supplied by the school), ever since a school volunteer requested one.

“The necklaces have been a big success and one of the most popular designs of all the Shanga Kanga necklaces,” Amy said.

Partnership in action: The Shanga Kanga necklace is the perfect symbol of the partnership between St Jude's and Shanga.
Partnership in action: The Shanga Kanga necklace is the perfect symbol of the partnership between St Jude’s and Shanga.

“We believe that partnership is important to the community because it enables people to share resources, knowledge and connections to achieve greater results with more cost efficiently. We are proud to partner with St Jude’s and know that is has helped to bring awareness and funds to the very special cause of St Jude’s as well as ensuring jobs are secure at Shanga for people who have nowhere else to go.”

The St Jude’s Kanga Shanga Necklace, a perfect gift for Christmas, can be ordered online for $18 each, on Shanga’s website. Shanga donates $5 towards educating students at St Jude’s for every necklace purchased.

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