IN CONTRAST TO THE TREND TOWARDS URBANIZATION AND CONSUMERISM, MANY PEOPLE ARE SEEKING AN OPPORTUNITY TO GET CLOSE TO NATURE, AND ZURI ZANZIBAR IS PART OF THIS MOVEMENT.
ZURI ZANZIBAR COMMUNITY INITIATIVES FOCUS ON EDUCATION, ENVIRONMENT AND WASTE MANAGEMENT, FOR PROMOTING PROSPEROUS FUTURE IN KENDWA.
Zuri Zanzibar is implementing several long-term initiatives together with communities, other companies and organizations for cleaner environment and ocean, and for promoting employment, education, and awareness in Zanzibar.
Our neighbourhood communities are not wealthy and the living conditions of many of them are very basic. Income levels are low and many families lack many basic essentials. Instead of giving money to individuals, or sweets to children, we want to encourage our guests to bring specific in-kind donations to support the people in a positive way, without promoting begging or skipping school in the hope of receiving gifts from tourists.
If you have space in your luggage, here is a list of some of the beneficial items:
• A laptop (used or new) for the Kilindi school IT class
• Books in English, English dictionaries, English-language practice books, stationery, and pens
• Eye-glasses, first-aid kits, inhalers for asthma, medical books
• Simple blood-sugar monitoring devices with additional strips and needles
• Re-useable sanitary pads and diapers (new, not single disposable ones please)
• Old sheets and towels, flea treatment for cats and dogs, small 1ml syringes, and small needles (23g) for the animal sanctuary
• Handicraft tools and materials such as crochet hooks
Please inform our reception if you bring a donation, and they will direct you to the CSR Manager.
In Kendwa village, the education level is low, which means that jobs in the tourism sector tend to be filled by skilled people from elsewhere.
At Zuri Zanzibar, we have aimed to be inclusive right from the beginning, starting a tourism training in Kendwa project, together with the Jambiani Tourism Training Institute (JTTI) in 2015 in order to ensure that we will have skilled young people joining our team.
Today we have 10 students working to complete their two-year education for a certificate in tourism and hospitality. Both the students and their trainers receive a monthly stipend to allow them to focus on the training.
Youth employment and creating a decent livelihood is vital to the well-being of the community. After this first group of graduates, we plan to continue vocational training in the tourism industry and to help more of the Kendwa youths to get the skills they need for a brighter future.
Hotels provide a good opportunity for high quality local products to be showcased and provided to the guests, but very often you find that the needed quality or product design is not available. In these ‘product creation’ partnerships we have worked together with social enterprises from Zanzibar and developed products for our hotel and guests’ use. Buying locally promotes employment and provides business opportunities that benefit the local communities the most.
CHAKO makes re-cycled products out of waste material that mostly comes from the tourism industry. They invite local artisans and craft workers, most of them women, to their workshop, where they learn re-cycling, co-creative design thinking, and artisan craft . Workers are encouraged to independently create products, and this stimulates social and economic empowerment and promotes sustainability.
The Seaweed Co. is a socially responsible business on the east coast of Zanzibar that provides female seaweed farmers with the opportunity to improve their personal standards of living and develop economic activities that benefit the entire community. We share a mutual vision: the aim to deliver exceptional quality to the guests and the wish to share their appreciation of Zanzibar through positive business practices. Guests can enjoy organic bathroom amenities made by The Seaweed Co.
Waste management infrastructure is still lacking in Zanzibar and too much of the waste ends up in the environment. This causes harm for both the people and the animals. Waste management and the need to keep the environment clean is one of Zuri Zanzibar’s most important community programmes. Our main goal is to reduce the amount of waste produced and to manage it responsibly.
In June, 2016, we started the ‘Keep Kendwa Clean!’ project together with Zanrec, a waste management company. For the last two years, our funding has allowed Zanrec to operate the project and provide a healthier environment for the community. We have placed waste collection points around the town, and a local women’s group is collecting trash and keeping the area tidy. By doing this they are also earning additional income for their families.
Education and the raising of awareness is a big part of this project. Weekly trainings, meetings and discussions are organized in Kendwa village and in the primary school of Kilindi. We are committed to protecting the natural environment for future generations, and we plan to expand this project. Some small, local businesses have already joined the waste management initiative and we hope to include more.
Many of the families in Kendwa make their income from traditional fishing practices, and the education level is very low. Subsequently the standard income level is also low and most homes have no electricity or running water.
We at the Zuri Zanzibar want to be part of, and make a contribution to, the Kendwa community, where we are located. We are working together with committees from the village to make longer-term development plans, and in the meantime we have made a one-off contribution to solve some of the immediate issues.
We have joined the community effort of building wells in the village and have provided an electricity connection to the primary school. Before the wells were built in the village, the women and girls had to get water from farther afield, which took a lot of their time and kept them from studying or earning extra income to support their families.
Education of the children is at the heart of every community. By supporting the Kilindi primary school, we are investing into the future of the community, and in the coming years we want to support the learning and training of all ages to enable a better livelihood for the whole community.
Due to the high cost of books, they are rare in Zanzibar communities. Reading books and getting access to them for free promote literacy and learning for all ages.
Together with Blackwell’s Community Libraries Project, we aim to accelerate learning through access to high quality books and reading materials. For every book collection that Blackwell supplies the hotel with, we will donate a reading and reference library to the local community.
We work with the Kilindi Primary School to organise a community library that will be set up in the IT and library building of the school. This was matched by another donation, by DHOW Furniture, which has provided the bookshelves that are made of the recycled wood from old boats. The rest of the furniture has been donated by us and made by the technical team from the Zuri Zanzibar.
We all believe that by engaging children with books in a fun and meaningful way can help them to develop the lifelong habit of reading and studying, and, therefore, a brighter future.