1.PREAMBLE: The idea to visit the DITF was developed from the training session the SAIC had with the Wildlife Department in March 2014.Preparations were done by the SAIC patron and the MNRT agreed to allow SAIC to use space in their pavilion for at least 3 hours to advocate for elephants protection.
2. THE TRIP: 14 members left SEGA at 8:30 AM on Saturday using the school bus and arrived in Dar at 2:00 PM. Alice Mitchell arrived with her friend Mary at around 6 PM.
14 shared 5 rooms with double size beds (self containers).Food was prepared by a local food vendor Hawa Nassoro. It was delicious and well cooked .The Patron forgot to budget for any food and water on Sunday 6/07/2014,thanks for the Caution money. All girls had enough food and water for the whole trip. We had several cases of headaches, stomachs discomforts and coughs,were treated by Pain killers.
4. DAR ES SALAAM INTERNATIONL TRADE FAIR:
On Sunday the 06/07/2014 we left our hotel at 9:00 AM. Again the club patron forgot to budget for the entrance fee for 14 girls, Alice and Mary plus the patron himself. Likewise the Caution money helped.
Reaching our destination we were told that the space meant for SAIC was to be occupied by the Security team as the Republic President was visiting the pavilion on that day. The Director of MNRT Pavilion made a suggestion either to postpone or use the other space around the premises to carry out SAIC activities.
We made use of the fenced area of the pavilion where the MNRT displays live wild animals. Our girls worked hard to attract attention of hundreds of people milling around and succeeded to “talk” with over 50 people from all walks of life. The girls used the short time of attention to tell them one or two objectives of SAIC and answered numerous questions from the people.
Alice Mitchell and her friend Mary helped a lot in organizing the activities as the girl were divided into 4 groups and needed guidance. Mary helped us to make 2 sells of T shirts!!
Closer to 12:00 PM we left the MNRT pavilion and spread all over the grounds trying to attract people’s attention. It was working and many of the people our girls talked to were enthusiastic about elephant protection and hence supported our girls.
5. FARHIYA’S LIVE TV INTERVIEW:
On our way out to the Exit Gate, one of SAIC member Farhiya Sultan was interviewed by a TBC presenter!!! Among questions covered were why Farhiya was in the grounds?? Of which the answer was: “I CAME TO TRY TO TAKE PART AS A GIRL IN PROTECTING ELEPHANTS.I CAME ALL THE WAY FROM MOROGORO TO EDUCATE PEOPLE ON WHY WE ALL SHOULD PROTECT ELEPHANTS!! ”
6. SELL OF T SHIRTS:
We sold 9 T shirts and gave 14 girls free 1 pair each. We could sell more if given the space promised. Still we will sell them in School Public Speaking Program, Trip to Dodoma and any other SAIC activities that will involve other people. All who saw the T shirts praised its colors as well as the design but mostly the message given by them.
The members observed that the MNRT officials were not that keen on to support the girls like locating another space at least similar to a table inside the pavilion. The officials were not very supportive and some were not even aware that SAIC is their guest/visitor!!!
8. RETURNING TO SEGA:
The visit to the DITF made our girls realize their ability to public speaking. Their confidence and advocacy was tested and built up. It helped me and Alice to discover a number of leadership skills, hard workers, public speakers, exhibitors and fighters!! The girls mostly worked independently especially when we went out of the MNRT pavilion. By themselves they advocated for the awareness of the mass on elephant protection. Special thanks to Polly Dolan for the Displays!!! They attracted several Chinese but they could not understand English,kept on saying “No English,No English!!!”
SAIC express their vote of thanks to all people who in one way or another have facilitated this trip. To name a few here is Tamara Pulsts for her supportive input at the very early stage of the trip, Polly Dollan for all the passion of SAIC and whatever it stands for, Anastazia Lukomo for your care and support of our club dreams and desires from the preparation to the trip itself, Mary we thank you so much and we are sorry for the dust and extreme temperatures of Dar which did not stop you selling two T shirts, Peter Michael for driving us safely with all the songs and discussions all through the journey and to all other people who have done something knowingly and unknowingly that ended up supporting us. Next Sunday the girls who traveled to Dar will share to the other members of what inspired in Dar.
I attach some pictures I took by my phone. Alice has more pictures which she will share with all of us soon.
Thank you very much.