This lovely photography of kids in Gloryland Prep School in Tanzania was taken by Kasha Sequoia Slavner from The Global Sunrise Project. Kasha is only 16 years old and already a photographer, filmmaker and entrepreneur! Outstanding! She attend high school in Toronto but took 2 semesters off to go travel for six months, with her mother Marla, for a documentary she is working on about global citizenship. She also also write about sustainable and responsible tourism. You can follow them both on Facebook and Twitter.
Picture Story: Gloryland Prep School Kids
In Arusha, Tanzania I visited Gloryland Prep School, a primary school for kids aged 3-10. I was travelling for six months across East Africa and Southeast Asia to document projects that work with a variety of issues ranging from education, to health care, human trafficking, environment and many others. My mom and I stopped in Tanzania so I could film the school for a documentary I’m making about resilience & people overcoming adversity. Gloryland was one of many stories that really had an impact on me.
The Gloryland Prep School was a bare bone structure – a dirt floor with cinderblock walls. no bulletin boards to hang artwork on, no electronic devices, no library to speak of, only a chalkboard at the front of the class and the students copying in their only notebook everything the teacher wrote down. What I was struck by was how the children at this school were so eager to learn, with their eyes glued to the board and/or their worksheets at all times. If they had to go to the washroom, they would quickly run there and back anxious not to miss anything. They took their school very seriously and were so appreciative of everything and I mean everything! The children’s open hearts and warm smiles touched my heart and made me have a greater appreciation also for the opportunities that we are given in Canada. What also makes this school so incredible are the teachers who completely dedicate themselves to their profession. As I talked with them, I grew to understand how much they want for their students.
This photo of four close friends was taken just after the children had eaten their breakfast (a cup of porridge) and were let out for recess. They saw me with my camera and immediately surrounded me asking to take a picture. One rounded the next up and before I knew it they were all standing in front of me camera-ready and super excited to see how the picture turned out. This went on for most of the recess but as soon as the bell rang – as fast as my fastest shutter speed would go, they were off to class! This moment really left me with a sense of what education means to them.
Despite all the obstacles that this community face every day, the children have hope. I saw this especially in the more rural areas of the country where there are very few schools and kids my age will walk up to 24 kilometres round-trip just to get an education to pursue their future aspirations.
Have you ever visited any school like this Gloryland Prep School in Tanzania? Any thought?