ROTARY HAPPENINGS: Tanzanian Charity Is Haven For Children

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following has been been submitted by Rotarian Cindy Carter Lee. Island club news can be sent to

The Amani Children’s Home in Tanzania is bringing hope and smiles back to the faces of homeless street children

Around the world, it is often the children who suffer from choices made by adults. This week we heard from Chris Hamilton, a member of the Damariscotta Newcastle Rotary in Maine, speaking about the inspiring story of a charity in Tanzania that is caring for children who have been forced to live on the streets.

Since 2001, Amani Children’s Home has been a haven of peace and safety for Tanzania’s most vulnerable children, who because of poverty, neglect, family breakdown, losing one or both parents to HIV/AIDS, and verbal, physical and sexual abuse have been left homeless. The Amani Children’s Home is committed to reducing the number of children living on the streets in Tanzania by providing a nurturing place for homeless children to heal, grow and learn. Once children are identified as being in need, they are given the option to live at the Amani Children’s Home. There they are given medical care, since many arrive malnourished and in poor health, three healthy meals a day and education, including life skills to restore hope in their lives.

Amani is committed to providing educational opportunities for each child they work with to develop responsible and self-reliant young adults. Many children did not complete primary school because of the expense of schooling and the families need for their children to tend their farms and livestock. Amani supports children in the local primary and secondary schools. They also support older children in vocational training programs so that they may study carpentry, electrical repair, and mechanics.

A main goal of Amani is to reunite the children with extended family members who can take them in. However, that can be a difficult task when many families live on unnamed, rough-terrain roads with no access to telephones or electricity. Often a child’s relative, once located, is able to provide a safe and loving home for the child, but they cannot afford to feed and educate them. In this case, Amani will assist the family with the child’s food and education expenses allowing the child to live with the family.

To date, Amani has brought more than 1,000 formerly homeless children into the care of loving families.

The Sanibel-Captiva Rotary will be holding hybrid meetings both on Zoom and in person at the Community House, 2173 Periwinkle Way. Doors open at 7:30 a.m., the meeting begins at 8 a.m. Email by the Tuesday before the meeting if you would like to attend in person. For more information about Rotary, visit

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