fbpx

The School of St Jude, Tanzania

Gemma Sisia with a few of St Jude's primary school students
Gemma Sisia with a few of St Jude's primary school students.

She has transformed thousands of lives by providing education in a society where education is a privilege for most, and along the way, created jobs for over 400 local Tanzanians. In recognition of her selfless contribution to improving the lives of others, the Australian government awarded her the Order of Australia medal in 2007.

Born in the country in Northern NSW, Gemma Sisia, the founder and proprietor of the School of St Jude in Arusha, Tanzania, returns to Australia every year to recharge her batteries, thank the school’s current supporters, and find more support for its ever growing funding needs.

During her latest visit, Gemma was happy to talk to SALT Magazine about her school and the challenges she faces in looking after over 1800 students in a rural region of Tanzania.

“I come back to Australia every year because each year we grow the school by 150 students. The purpose of the trip is twofold – firstly to update the people who are already supporting the school and then to find additional support for the 150 new students that we bring into the school program”.

To make sure parcels arrive and incur no expenses for the school

  • Please do NOT register or insure any mail as it costs the school at least USD $25 in taxes at our end.
  • Mark all parcels as being “second-hand goods” or “personal gifts”.
  • Ensure the description of goods written on the parcel matches the actual items inside as customs and postal staff frequently inspect contents of parcels.
  • Please label all parcels clearly with the first and last name of the recipient and your full name.
  • Please put the value of the package at no more than US$10 (the lower the better).
  • Ensure that your parcel is LESS THAN 2KG. We have been advised that parcels less than 2KG are technically tax-free regardless of content, but this is not guaranteed by all postal workers.
 

Tax-free items include books, personal goods and anything that is not new. Used goods, used clothes, etc…(please remove labels and packaging from all items before sending them)

Keep in mind that parcels sent by airmail can take up to four months to get here (sea mail is even longer – often 12+ months!), so don’t worry if it takes a while for us to let you know the parcel has arrived.