The Rotary Club of Moshi, Tanzania erected the Moshi Rotary Peace Monument in celebration of 100 years of the Rotary Foundation. The monument is a tribute to Rotarians and the community of Moshi to stand together for a shared vision for the advancement of peace, goodwill and world understanding. To meet this important goal of pursuing peace, Rotarians have become engaged, knowledgeable and empowered themselves and others into effective agents of peace within their communities, their societies and the world.

We envision and strive towards a more peaceful world through the Rotary global and local partnership. For us peace is development and a way of life, not an event. And this pursuit can only become more visible when we all come together to work towards common goals. As we look around the world today, from Central African Republic to South Sudan, from Syria to Iraq, we see the heavy toll that conflict takes on lives, communities, and whole countries. Global inequality of peacefulness has widened in 2016, as least peaceful countries spiral into increased violence. Violence costs the world human lives but also financial losses. In fact, U$ 13.6 trillion dollars which is U$ 1,876 (about 4 million Tanzania shillings) for every person in the world are lost every year, unnecessarily due to conflict situations.

Refugees and displaced persons have risen dramatically over the last decade, doubling to approximately 60 million people between 2007 and 2016, nearly 1% of the world’s population. As Rotarians, we believe that we should not live for ourselves alone, but for the joy of doing good for others, and particularly the marginalized and poor. We believe that it is only through dedicated and active service that we can achieve true and lasting peace, the kind of peace that promotes development, nurtures skills and change lives to build a bright and promising future for all Tanzanians.

Tanzania is blessed with abundant natural resources and assets including its people and a peaceful environment. The country plays an important role in regional integration and conflict resolution. It is indeed a haven of peace in this region and the world at large. And it is because of this peaceful environment that important progress has been made in economic growth and the reduction of poverty.

According to the National Strategy for Growth and Reduction of Poverty II of 2010, (popularly known in Swahili as MKUKUTA) access to education has increased at all levels, with tremendous increase happening with secondary school education. With the design of a Primary Health Service Development Programme (2007 – 2017), new health facilities such as dispensaries, health centres and hospitals were constructed and availability of equipment and medicines has been improved.

In spite of these accomplishments, the government recognizes that there gaps and challenges and makes a call within this strategic document and I quote: “We need to further improve peoples’ health by building stronger capacities to prevent and cure diseases. We need to further increase access to health care by the people of Tanzania and scale up efforts to reduce child and maternal mortality and eliminate malnutrition. We need to make available to every Tanzanian, clean and portable water close to their homesteads.”

And it is in the same spirit that The Rotary Club globally and nationally made it a priority to reflect upon these areas at its 2016 Rotary World Peace Conference on 15 to 16 January in Ontario, California which convened Rotarians, Peace Fellows and civil society leaders from around the world to deliberate about issues of Peace, Conflict Prevention and Resolution. One of the key outcomes of the conference was the joint planning of peace and development related projects in various areas of interest. These initiatives are already being implemented in various geographical locations within all Rotary affiliated countries, including Tanzania and specifically Moshi.

Building on those promises, the Rotary Club of Moshi, has actively served the communities of Moshi and Kilimanjaro at large and together with local government representatives, community leaders and residents, initiatives have been established in disease prevention and treatment; access to water and sanitation; improving maternal and child health; attaining basic education and literary; and economic and community development.The Rotary Club of Moshi has served communities of Kilimanjaro since 1959. In the last five years, together with our key partners have achieved the following:

– We have supported 300 orphans with education and medical treatment clothes amounting to $65,000.

– We have supplied medical equipment to hospitals: Upare, Iwa,  Kirua government clinic, Kilema Hospital, Nganjoni clinic, Msaranga clinic, Kibosho Hospital and Sanya Juu Hospital totaling to $720,000.

– We have constructed a water system and filteration plant for Nyumba ya Mungu and supplied water filters to Msitu wa Tembo community and other schools around Kilimanjaro.

– We have conducted Vision Aid and Albinism Awareness low vision testing amounting to $40,606 and facilitated cataract operations at Kiboshi Hospital.

– Rotarians Eliminating Malaria in Tanzania has worked with the local municipality to fumigate insecticide in households, to distribute mosquito nets and diagnostic equipment, totaling to over $ 1 million dollars.

– To increase access to clean energy, we have constructed biogas system for toilets at the Mashingia Government Secondary School and 12 toilets at the Moshi Primary School. In this area we have spent a total of $42,366.

– Through our Vocational Skills Building and Economic Community Development project youth have acquired knowledge and skills in basic computers (87 students); technology training programs (63 teachers); and 66 students trained as part of the Second Chance Educational Programming.

– We have installed rain water harvesting technology in the following Government Primary and Secondary Schools: Msaranga, Msandaka, Maringeni, Mashingia, Same, Mramba School for blind, and Second Chance Education Centre.

– Currently underway is our project called Building Lives – Vijana Poa, which aims to help youth to establish sustainable livelihoods, to provide employment, build skills and self-reliance. In this regard, we have trained and provided equipment to 207 youth to start up small businesses such as hair dressing, tailoring, catering, jewelry making, pig keeping, farming, poultry keeping shop keeping etc. A total of $53,566.000 has been set aside for this initiative.

What you see here in front of you is the Moshi Rotary Peace Monument. It is a pillar of 6 feet in diameter and 8 feet high and conveys a message of Peace and Service – it is inscribed with the globe, a dove and rotary information written in six languages. The globe conveys awareness and the dove symbolizes the service towards world peace.

It is our desire that this statue to be unveiled here will remain across generations, to be a mark of Peace and Awareness to demonstrate commitment in making peace a reality in our community. It will embody the spirit of Rotary which places – SERVICE ABOVE SELF and motivates individuals to contribute both individually and collectively to participating in their own development and ultimately making their lives better.

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