Maasai man proves education best weapon against poverty

THE humanitarian work of the School of St Jude in Tanzania will be outlined during talks to south-west residents next week.

THE humanitarian work of the School of St Jude in Tanzania will be outlined during talks to south-west residents next week.

THE humanitarian work of the School of St Jude in Tanzania will be outlined during talks to south-west residents next week.

The school’s inspirational visitor, co-ordinator Felix Mollel, will speak about fighting poverty through education at Rotary meetings in Warrnambool and during visits to the Grasmere Primary School and Our Lady Help of Christians School.

St Jude’s was established 12 years ago with just three students and one teacher. It now provides free education to more than 1800 children from impoverished backgrounds in the Arusha province.

Mr Mollel is from the Maasai tribe, a group of semi-nomadic people in northern Tanzania. 

As a child, he attended a government-run primary school where one teacher supervised up to 150 students in a class. 

He then had to compete with hundreds of other Tanzanian students to secure a place in secondary school. 

He left early to take up a job as a bus driver, later starting as a driver with St Jude’s. 

He then worked hard to improve his English over the next few years and secured a job with the school’s visitor team. He now enjoys taking international visitors on tours of the school.

Mr Mollel drew on knowledge from his Maasai upbringing, remembering that challenging situations offer a good opportunity to prove your strength. 

He toured Australia last year during his first trip outside of Tanzania and is looking forward to catching up with supporters again.

“I was overwhelmed by people’s generosity and kindness when I was in Australia last October,” Mr Mollel said.

He will be in the Warrnambool area on June 18.

malexander@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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