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St. Francis of Assisi, Mapinduzi, is the Tanzanian parish linked with Whitbourne. This link was started by our rector, Rev. David Howell, on his visit in 1999. Mapinduzi is one of the poorer areas of Tanga and its people are suffering, like most of the rest of the country, from poverty and disease.

In 2003 we helped with the cost of new pews for the church and with the kindergarten. Look how empty the shelves were! We have sent teaching materials - pens, paper, jigsaw puzzles and building blocks.
In January 2003 we talked with the St.Francis Mothers' Union, under the mango tree where they held their sewing classes with just two machines. We sent them two more. They then rented a room and paid the rent from what they produced. Then they had a room in the unfinished hostel building, and now they use the kindergarten when the children have gone home.
This was the hostel building in 2001, 2002 and 2003. It was bought with the idea of providing safe accommodation for girls coming to Tanga for work or training. We wanted to help them build a roof, so that sewing and computer classes could also be held on their own premises. We intended to start with just the front part, but by the end of 2004 the complete building was roofed and some doors and windows were in place.
This is the hostel building in 2004. It still needed electricity, plumbing, plastering and some doors and windows - but it was already being used for meetings, choir practice and sewing.
GREAT NEWS! In 2006 the hostel was opened and began operation in January 2007, providing accommodation for forty trainee teachers.

In 2007 a Christmas Appeal in Whitbourne raised £800 which assisted AIDS orphans with their education as well as providing home-based care for people bedridden with AIDS.

The next main project is building a church hall - and, of course, the church itself needs a new roof!

2008 - With the hostel fully occupied by trainee teachers and the next plot bought, it is time to think about building the new church hall. Appropriately it was on St. Francis' day, after the service but before the parish barbecue, that the plot was blessed and we cut the first sod.
2010: Foundations for the church hall are in place - but the church roof was in crisis; people brought umbrellas to services. After some frantic money-raising, there is a new roof. They still need some windows and electricity. We are now finding a proper church bell to replace the gas canister!
2012  We sent a bell, thanks to the Keltek Trust, St. Mark's church, Watford and St. Peter's, Hednesford.   Also thanks to St. Mark's, who, when the first bell was stolen, gave the insurance money towards building the bell tower.   The new tower, complete with bell, was blessed by Bishop Maimbo in January 2013.
2013  The Church Hall is taking shape!   The foundations had been prepared in 2009, the floor laid in 2010, but Tanzanians make haste slowly, and it was 2013 before the walls reached window height.