Our story begins in the green, lush, tea growing hills of Southern Tanzania and a remarkable couple, Geoff and Vicky Fox, who have lived and worked in the Mufindi district since 1959.
The silent merciless effects of HIV/Aids in their remote area led to a breakdown in the extended family support system, usually strong and effective in Africa, leading to vulnerable orphans, poverty and hunger.
By 2005, Geoff and Vicky felt the need to act to help their community and Foxes Community and Wildlife Trust, a Tanzanian Non Governmental Organisation, (NGO 0971) was conceived. This project came to be known in Tanzania as Foxes’ NGO. In 2016 Geoff Fox was awarded the MBE for “his services to conservation and the community in Tanzania”
The first step was to provide shelter and refuge for the increasing numbers of orphans and thus the Igoda Children’s Village was begun with one small house, first occupied in 2007.
To financially support and expand the work on the ground in Tanzania, Orphans in the Wild (Reg Charity 1113719) was founded in the UK in 2006 for the purpose of raising awareness and funds together with our sister charities worldwide.
Mufindi Orphans (USA) www.mufindiorphans.org, Mufindi Orphans (Canada) www.mufindorphans.ca, Mufindin Ystavat www.mufindinystavat.net (Finland).
Now in 2017, 74 children being cared for in six single storey houses, each with dedicated house mamas, an on site clinic, a kindergarten and nursery, a continuing vocational school project and accommodation for volunteers.
But the Children’s Village is one part of a holistic approach. We want to make a lasting difference, empowering people to be able to help themselves.
So support for Healthcare ,Education and Income Generation are vital for long term recovery. We have already made a difference but more needs to be done before these proud and independent people can overcome the ravages of this disease.
In tandem with its work at the children’s village the NGO has established a HIV/Aids
Care and Treatment Clinic (CTC) where people are encouraged to come for testing for Aids and dispensing of Anti retroviral drugs, has built dispensaries in the more remote regions of the District, supported primary and secondary education, established a programme of Outreach carers, provided community support and income generation projects.
But there is still a long way to go.
99% of all donations are used directly on the ground in Tanzania.
Orphans in the Wild have no paid staff.
- In Tanzania itself the work is led by self funded project managers and long term volunteers.
- Only the local Tanzanian employees receive a wage.
- The project area is centred on Igoda village, Mufindi District.
- 16 villages, 35,000 population.
- It is a ‘hot spot’ for HIV/Aids.
- 37%-44% of people are infected. Compared to national average 5%-7%.
- Approximately 40% of children have lost at least one parent.
- Average income less than a dollar a day.
- Life expectancy = 43 yrs.