Morogoro is nestled at the foot of the serrated Uluguru Mountains. It’s a strikingly beautiful spot. The morning sun here rises above mountain mists and floods the town below in hues of orange and gold.
Four young children from the local community join us on one of our first hikes up the mountain. They laughingly call out ‘Mambo!’ in greeting as we pass, scrambling up the green hillside beside us with light-footed ease. Despite their tiny frames they are full of energy, resolve and bright eyed curiosity.
Their spirit, I think, reflects the essence of Raleigh. Raleigh’s vision is to work together, as a global community, to build a sustainable future. And our purpose is to create this lasting change through youth. Why youth? Because we believe, as demonstrated by these local children, that young people are the generation that has the energy, enthusiasm and potential to make positive change happen. Both globally and in their own communities.
There are 1.8 billion young people in the word today, and over 60% of the Tanzanian population is under 24 years old. Young people are often those most vulnerable to the many issues caused by poverty, but aren’t they also the most important resource the world has to take up the challenge of addressing these issues? They can be blessed with an open-minded and creative approach to life, and yet such attitudes are often dismissed as naïve or optimistic. Instead, shouldn’t we be encouraging and harnessing this youthful energy, these attitudes? This is Raleigh’s aim.
The expedition that lies ahead brings with it a golden opportunity for both the young people in local Tanzanian communities and the young Raleigh volunteers. By working together side by side, we are all granted the chance to develop a range of skills and attitudes. We are inspired by one another. This is empowering. And it’s the motivation of empowered people that is the root of lasting change. It’s infectious.
My name is Milly, and together with Natalia, our photographer, and Juanee, our videographer, we form the Communications Team for this expedition. Over the next few months we will be bringing you insights into the projects that we are working on here in Tanzania, together with the local communities and our brand partners. With the Global Goals being officially signed this Friday, this is an incredibly exciting time for us – (more of that to come!) The advanced Fieldbase Team are doing a stellar job of ‘setting up camp’ here in Morogoro. You can learn more about Fieldbase and all our various roles in the next blog. We also look forward to the arrivals of the Volunteer Managers and Volunteers in the coming few weeks.