Background

Our organisation was first established as Friends of Don Bosco (FDB) in 1998 by Evans Tegete. In 2010 we changed our name to Watoto Wetu Tanzania.

The beginning

Evans lost his mother when he was 2 years old. His father was unable to take care of him, therefore he grew up under the protection of his grandmother. After completing primary level he was accepted to join the Don Bosco Seminary at Mafinga, and later on completed his advanced level at Mkwawa High School.   To complete his education and to get through all the other obstacles of being without parents in his childhood took a lot of hard work and help from many good samaritans around. That is why it also became his dream to help other children who are in the same situation as he was. That goal was realized in 1998 when he established FDB in the Tabata area. In the beginning he started the mission alone with 6 children, who were taken in from the streets. In 1999 he started receiving help from other local volunteers and in 2000 the media started to take notice of their efforts. This led to different interviews in the radio and on TV, which meant more children were able to receive help.   background2

Our family

Most of the children have lost either one or both of their parents and/or lost contact with the remaining family. When they join our centre they are accepted as members of our family instead. The centre's most fundamental philosophy is that we are living together as one family and treating each other as such, as brothers and sisters. Everyone of our young adults are responsible for one of our smaller ones, becoming like a new father or mother for the child, and a person to talk to if any problems arise. The duties of running a household are also shared between the children, with the older ones taking more responsibility. Furthermore our committed voluntary staff take the role as heads of the family. They are always there to help, and are also the ones who take care of the official business (and make sure the children are studying hard). background4
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The progress

Our organisation was registered through the Ministry of Home Affairs in 2001 and in 2002 we were donated the plot at Kimara Suca, Dar es Salaam, where the centre is still located. Hereafter the number of children the organisation was helping steadily increased. In 1998, 6 children received help, in 2002 60 children received help, and in 2010 the centre supported more than 150 children and youth, with app. 55 of them living at the centre (70 during vacations). The children are of all ages between 3-24 years old. The main goal is to enable them to get an education, so they can continue their lives independently when they are too old to stay at the centre. Currently most of them are secondary school students. The rest are either in primary or nursery school, while some attend university or vocational training colleges. background3

Our name

Watoto Wetu Tanzania comes from the belief that we should treat all children as our own children, especially the ones, who do not have anyone else to care for them. There is a significant amount of orphans and vulnerable children in Tanzania and we should all do our best to give them the love, passion and help they need. Although we were content with our previous name, it lead to some unnecessary obstacles, which we wanted to eliminate. There were two main reasons for the change. The first being that we were often mistaken for or associated with The Society of the Salesians of Don Bosco, which is a larger religious organisation. Furthermore we found that the referral to Don Bosco in our name lead some to believe that we are a religious organisation. At our centre however we allow the children to believe in whichever God or religion they wish and we treat them equally regardless of their religious conviction.

Watoto_wetu_logoOur logo

The house in the middle, symbolizes our centre, and the four children inside represent the four pillars of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. These are the rights to:
  • Development - (education, play, leisure, information)
  • Survival - (food, clothes, shelter)
  • Protection - (against violence, war, drugs, sexual abuse)
  • Participation - (freedom of speech, influence, co- and self determination)
If children are deprived and denied of their rights, their full potential will not be realized. Therefore these rights are essential for the existence of our centre. Furthermore the four children in the logo also represent the diversity of children, which is found at the centre. We have boys and girls, old and young, dark skinned, light skinned and albino, children with disabilities and children of different race and religious beliefs. Together they are all our children. The flag of course represents our nationality and the hands holding the base of the centre, symbolizes that we should all, man and woman, unite in supporting these children of unfortunate fates. The logo was designed and drawn by one of our own beneficiaries.