Members of the Women’s Circle at First Larne Presbyterian Church are helping Tanzanian children get an education by sending “scholar packs” to the African country.
The scheme is being co-ordinated by charity Kids4School, who operate sponsorship programmes and projects to improve the education of Tanzanian schoolchildren.
Secretary of the Women’s Circle Ina Ross told The Times that after donating sponsorship money to the charity on an earlier occasion, the group decided to send practical help to Tanzania via the scholar packs.
She explained: “The schools have little or no writing material. Sometimes the only person with a book is the teacher.
“Kids4School work to provide text books and scholar packs which are useful for the children’s education.”
The Women’s circle assembled around 15 packs of vital items containing calculators, geometry sets of rulers, protractors and set squares, colouring pencils, biros and pencils, rubbers and pencil sharpeners.
While such items are readily available here, Ina says that they make a real difference to Tanzania schoolchildren who do not have access to the same resources. She continued: “It helps them with their maths skills. It’s the first time we have done this and we enjoyed doing it.
“It feels good to be making a difference for the children. Many of our members have grandchildren and they like to help the children out in Africa as well.”
Donations from members of the Woman’s Circle have also helped provide breakfast for Tanzanian children, many of whom come to school hungry.
Ina continued: “Quite a few of our members opted to sponsor children for £35.
“We got a letter from a wee boy who went for breakfast and got his porridge and he went to the side and asked for another cup.
“He then poured half of his porridge into the cup.
“He had brought his younger sister to school with him so she could eat as well.
“It makes a huge difference.”