We stayed for only 3 weeks and in that short time we were introduced to a completely different way of life. This collection of pictures is a perfect representation of the idea that everyone has their own tale to tell. Read the captions below the images to learn the stories of these amazing people.
This is Julius, a 35 year old hospital security guard. Here he's shown holding a baton that he's never had to use. He dreams that one day he'll find a better paying job - but he never forgets that he's one of the few lucky people in Tanzania who can support his wife and two children with a steady paycheck.
Amina, who thinks she's 32 years old, had just given birth to her 5th child, who she named Joseph. He was born prematurely weighing only 1.4 Kilos (3.1 pounds). When we met she was busy pumping breast milk in the hopes that if he survived, she would have enough milk to give him. Unfortunately we were told that just a few hours after we met Amina her baby boy died. In Tanzania the father rarely can afford to travel to the hospital to witness his baby’s birth and this was no exception. So the next day she put his body into a small box and carried him home to prove that she gave birth, but that the baby had died.
This is David A Tweve. He’s been selling used clothing and shoes in his village for the last 3 years. When he started his business he had saved 100,000 Tanzanian Shillings ($74.85) and now that his business has grown he’s saved over 3,000,000 Shillings ($2,245). He hopes that with continued patience and savings that one day he can open a shop with a rooftop and sell new merchandise instead of used.
There came a point when I ran out of model releases, so I traveled to the nearest town where I asked at least five people where I could make some copies. I eventually came across this man's shop. His only business was making copies but he acted like it was the first time he had ever touched the machine. The first copy came out completely black and it took him eight more tries to make it look readable. Then I told him that I needed 15. After each copy, the machine got stuck, and he would have to take it apart. At some point during those twenty five minutes I took out my camera and a light so I could take his picture.
Fausta (pictured left) is an Italian missionary who has been living in Tanzania for the last 13 years. She started an orphanage that’s home to more than 400 children, many of which are infected with HIV. Every month local people bring more children to Fausta in hopes that she will make a place for them in her orphanage. Here she is seen photographing a child that she is considering taking in.
Sister Anania Koko is one of the religious presences in the tosamaganga hospital. She has been working as the hospital record data keeper for the last few months.
Seven days a week, 23-year-old Galson Mgaya rides from his remote village of Mtwango to the nearest city of Makambako, Tanzania. He straps 20 chickens to the back of his bicycle and then sells them in the city for twice what they'd go for in his small town. The trip takes him 3.5 hours each way, but it's worthwhile because he makes about $8 each day. His daily profit helps support his parents and two sisters.
This is Hawa, she’s 32 years old. Her husband left her a few years ago but she feels lucky to have a good job at the gas station where she has worked for over a year. She supports herself and her 3 children, which is not so common on the small, mostly Muslim island of Zanzibar. She dreams that her children will one day have the chance to go to secondary school.
This is Justin. He’s six years old and dreams that someday he will become the President of Tanzania.
This is Theopista. She’s six years old and dreams that one day she will become a nun.
Lucia (pictured at right) is 25 years old. She is an obstetrician in a country where a high percentage of women die giving birth. She came to Tanzania for a month before deciding to stay for an entire year. After seeing the situation she didn't think she could afford to see what she saw without doing something to help the situation.Now she is teaching the staff techniques to create a sustainable environment when she leaves in a few months.
This is Bruna Fergnani, Lucio Lunghi, and their new family. They moved to Tanzania after they took a short trip and realized the scale of the problems the country endures. They adopted 3 disabled children and opened a small school for the other disabled children living in their community. They plan to spend the rest of their life in Tanzania raising their new children and helping others in their community.
Simona and Stefano speaking with Tekemistä, a young local that was injured when he fell into a hole carrying a heavy sac of rice. He has not seen a doctor in over 2 years and he passes his time reading his only book, a bible. Simona and Stefano are traveling the country helping as many disabled people as they can with the basic necessities of living life with a disability. Stefano promised that he would come back the next day with the newspaper.
This is Baba Camillo. He’s 70 years old and spent most of his life as a missionary in Tanziana. He’s built 2 schools, a church, he’s supplied 19 villages with clean drinking water and he is an active priest in a many churches around his community. Here he’s shown arriving on a Saturday morning to give mass. The locals always wait with patience and excitement in anticipation of his arrival.
This is the playground at one of the local orphanages we visited. Many of the children claim that this is their favorite part of the day. They try to get as many people on the slide as possible and at one point I remember seeing at least 20.
Every day before lunch in the orphanage all of the children are required to bring back at least 5 pieces of wood for the kitchen stove. They run into the forest where a nun is chopping wood and they bring back their 5 pieces, usually 1 at a time. Many of them run as fast as they can so they can get the first choice of food.