Posted by Chuck Chase on Apr 12, 2019
It was great to see Past District Governor, Rick Caron, today and to hear his update on the project that has been near and dear to his heart - Legacy project in Tanzania through the Windsor 1918 Rotary Club. In Tanzania, Rick said, was a project to build a Learning Center to which our club donated $500 and Rick thanked us for. Tanzania is located on the east coast of Africa and the home, Rick was adamant about – the home of Mt. Kilimanjaro, not Kenya!

Rick spoke about, Dorcas, a student he and his wife have been supporting in Tanzania who was also present at the opening ceremonies at the new center. The real goal, he said, of his involvement in the Learning Center was “education” and particularly of “vulnerable young women” which broadened to young men over time as well. He went on to speak about the many successes he’s witnessed at the center.

He spoke about Mary who was a friend of his daughter, Julie, who had lost her husband and had two children one of which was Dorcas. Mary became aware of children in the area who had no parents and began taking them in. Eventually her dream was to have a facility that could house, love on, educate and feed children like these. Rick said his daughter returned to the states in 2009 and told him something needed to be done. They have been assisting ever since, he said. Shortly after her return, they were told Mary had died but that her brother, Timothy, continued to “carry on Mary’s vision”.

As soon as he became an NGO (Non-Government Organization) and with a board of directors, Rick told him they could continue to help which he did. Timothy, Rick said, soon became a member and eventually president of the club which eventually qualified the club for international grants that helped with the construction of the new Learning Center!

Rick went on to share the many success stories of students who have been able to attend the Center like Nima who was pregnant and then became a nurse thanks to the Learning Center; Oscar whose job was on the farm but who loved to learn and would sneak into the school and sit under desks because he couldn’t afford the fees and later passed an exam to qualify him to enter a secondary school! From there he entered medical school.

Another success story, Rick said, was Eva – and another product of the Learning Center who dropped out of school at age 17 to get married but because Timothy heard about he situation, is now a pharmaceutical technician; Patrick who also wants to become a doctor; JR (aka Junior Rick and “The Little Professor”) is actually named after Rick; Shedraq – a student Rick’s son is sponsoring needed an education to join the army so attended the center and soon had desires to become a mechanic; Marta – now in her second year studying business administration. “This school”, Rick said, “gives people a chance to excel and everyone improves with education”.

Rick also mentioned that Noel Jackson (PGN) and his wife are also supporting children in Tanzania and closed by showing us pictures of other children who were attending the Learning Center whose lives have been changed thanks to Rotary and the vision of Rick and his daughter, Julie! Always great seeing you, Rick. Keep up the wonderful work!

Should anyone wish to contribute to this great cause, he said, can contact PDG David Carpenter through the District 6400 website.