Hitting Refresh!

I’m hitting the Refresh button yet again. But this time I am pursuing a life-long dream. I’m headed to Tanzania, Africa.

For most of my life, I have wanted to help people in developing countries, with the continent of Africa being the illusive cherry on top. While I did get a short opportunity to dip my toe into the beautiful continent when I briefly worked in Nigeria, I was at an American school with primarily foreign students from the embassies.

Not this time.

I’m thrilled to announce that I have accepted an offer to be the School Director for a rural secondary school outside of Arusha. I start mid-June. I’m absolutely thrilled, to say the least.

Feeding time: wildebeest and zebras graze in Ngorongoro’s grasslands FRANS LANTING/GETTY

The organization I will be working for is The Red Sweater Project, a nonprofit out of the US, founded by a young woman, Ashley Holmer, who had been volunteering in the area. While coaching soccer, she was approached by the village elders who explained to her of the extreme need for more schools. Seeing her obvious interest, they offered her a deal, if they gave her the land, would she build them a school? Being young and excited by the prospect of making a big impact, she said yes. That was back in 2005 and it was only the beginning.

Working for someone like this, a woman that is changing lives, is very exciting. Working at the crossroads to five major national parks (Serengeti, Ngorongoro Crater, Tarangire, Lake Manyara, Mt. Kilimanjaro) and being able to live among all the amazing animals, landscapes and cultures, delights my heart.

So, after a six month rest from blogging, I will break my hiatus and begin sharing this journey with you. So stay tuned for photos and snippets.

2 Comments

  • sandylanderson

    Gretchen, I’m so excited for you. We started and ended in Arusha last November on our bucketlist Safari to all the places you mentioned. Oh, I wish I could show you my photos. Will look forward to your blogs, my great adventurer. Of course, Donna will have to come visit??? Sandy

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