Tanzania - Kitete

Population facets: 


Partner Organization:  Congregation of the Holy Cross in Kitete, Tanzania

Location:  Kitete, Tanzania

Number of Students:  2 students

Dates:   Site determines dates. Anticipated departure is Monday or Tuesday following final exams to coincide with the Audrey Veldman Trade and Vocational School calendar.

Participation Requirements:

  • Language & Proficiency Requirement:  Students will be expected to  learn basic Swahili before arriving  and take initiative to learn Kiswahili on site. An openness and desire to learning Kiswahili goes a long way.  While English is the medium of instruction (specifically in universities and high courts), many villagers do not speak English.  Secondary school students may be conversational in English but young children and the elderly struggle with basic English.
  • Gender Requirement:  None
  • Required Experience:  Experience teaching or tutoring and working with youth.
  • Major Requirement:  None
  • Student Minimum Age:  None
  • Special Requirements: This site was development in collaboration with Keough Hall. One of the two positions is typically committed to a qualified Keough Hall resident and partially funded by the hall.
  • Other:  This site is best for those interested in the study of rural poverty, small-scale markets, and education.  It is strongly recommended that participants have already taken or plan to take an African related course prior to summer.  Since students live with Holy Cross priests, this site is also suitable for any males considering a religious vocation.  Students are expected to participate fully in the community and faith life of the Congregation of Holy Cross. 

Special Training Required Prior to Summer Deployment:  

Students attend once a week introductory Swahili sessions with past participants and regular weekly meeting, days and times to be determined at the start of the spring semester coordinating schedules with accepted students and past participants.

(The following sessions and workshops will be organized and provided by the ISSLP during the spring semester. Additional training sessions may be added as needed.)

  • Teaching/Working with Children Workshop
  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Training
  • Congregation of Holy Cross Orientation
  • Self Defense Session
  • World Religions

Site Description:  

See the Congregation of the Holy Cross website: http://www.holycrosscongregation.org/

View a website created for the sister parish relationship with St. Brendan, Kitete, Tanzania and St. Gabriel, Milford, CT:  http://www.kiteteparish.org/

The preeminent ministry of the Congregation of Holy Cross is service to the people of God and lives out this desire in three main apostolates:  Education, Parish Work, and Missions.  The Holy Cross vision for ministry through education is holistic with the goal of preparing “useful citizens for society” as well as “citizens for heaven.”  Holy Cross parishes across the United States and around the world are places of service, education and instruction, family spirit and community, and collaboration in the life journeys of individuals and groups toward God.  Holy Cross’ outreach to other countries has been an integral part of their zeal to make God known, loved, and served, and to boldly address the world’s needs for justice and charity.  Holy Cross has communities of ministry in Africa, Bangladesh, Canada, Latin America, Europe, and the U.S. 

The Congregation’s mottos are Ave Crux, Spes Unica, “Hail the Cross, Our Only Hope.”  It is in this spirit of bringing hope that lay men and women are invited to collaborate and participate in the ministry and missions of Holy Cross around the world. 

The Congregation of the Holy Cross priests and brothers run St. Brendan’s Parish, the Audrey Veldman Trade and Vocational School and a nursery school in Kitete, Tanzania. Kitete is a very rural village situated on hills which front on the Ngorongoro Forest on the west edge of the great East Africa Rift Valley and overlooks Lake Manyara Plains 1000 feet below.  The parish is off the main road to the Ngorongoro Crater.  The population is made up of two ethnic tribal groups - Wairaqw and Masai. 

Scope of Work & Responsibilities:

Notice: Scope of work may have some changes based on the needs of the partner organizations at the time of student arrival. 

Audrey Veldman Trade School is a technical school for students who either cannot afford secondary school or did not receive high enough grades to attend.  At the Veldman School, boys learn carpentry and masonry and girls learn tailoring, sewing, and knitting.  The school mainly serves the youth of Kitete, although there are students from as far away as Moshi who attend. 

The ISSLP students’ primary responsibility is to teach subjects (English language, computers, and possible other subjects) that are not a part of the Audrey Veldman School’s regular daily curriculum.  Teaching involves preparing material for the classes, helping students with their work, and preparing, proctoring, and grading exams.  Students typically teach in the morning and in the afternoon they interact with the students when they were finished with class by playing volleyball or soccer or other co-curricular activities such as debate.

Other activities included helping the cook at the house, odd jobs around the parish farm and house, as well as accompanying the priests to outstation Masses and activities and occasionally serving the altar.  The Parish serves many outlying villages throughout the region. 

For 2017, in addition to teaching and parish work, the site is interested in having students explore ways to advertise the school better and follow-up on the status and work lives of the alumni. 

ISSLP 2016 taught English and math, developed the exams, held review sessions in their respective subjects and graded finals.  They assisted the priests with secretarial/computer and budgeting work and accompanied them for out-station masses, including daily mass.  Students frequently assisted parish workers with their tasks of preparing meals, laundry and cleaning. Currently the pre-school is not functioning due to construction. ISSLP 2015 taught English, math, and computers and remaining time was spent participating in the parish community and with the nursery school. ISSLP 2014 students interacted with the nursery school, which has morning and afternoon groups.  With the preschool, afternoon activities included playing with the preschool students, helping the children learn counting and the alphabet, and helping the preschool teacher with miscellaneous tasks. 

Beyond the work, students have many opportunities to incorporate into rural village life through playing with the children, visiting the markets, going to daily mass, and just walking around the village area which is filled with friendly and welcoming people.  Also, students experience firsthand the pastoral care of many, small Christian communities.

Students are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner in and out of the classroom given their roles in the community as teachers.  Students are expected to participate in the prayer life of the Holy Cross Community attending daily mass and at morning and evening prayer.


Housing & Lodging Information:

Students stay in the parish guesthouse with three separate bedrooms and a shared bathroom near the Holy Cross Priests and Brothers.  Meals are provided by the parish and prepared by the parish cook.  The food consists mostly of rice and meat, and there were also beans, fruit, chapatti, and pancakes.  A student who liked to cook and bake was a light and humorous anomaly one year and the priests and staff enjoyed that he would share his baking talents with them.  There is running water and electricity in the parish guest house which is rare in many rural places in Tanzania. 

Students live in community which includes sharing meals, prayer, and Mass together.  While the priests are very hospitality oriented and welcoming, it is important for students to remember that they are guests in the priests’ home and should be respectful and helpful with household chores.  

For More Information:

Visit the Congregation of Holy Cross websites: http://www.holycrosscongregation.org/

View a website created for the sister parish relationship with St. Brendan, Kitete, Tanzania and St. Gabriel, Milford, CT:  http://www.kiteteparish.org/

Former ISSLP Participants:

Taylor Still’18 (ISSLP 2016), tstill@nd.edu
Ben Swanson’17(ISSLP 2016), bswanso1@nd.edu

Notice: Certain sites may be canceled and other sites added at any point during the selection and orientation process.