Educating a Girl

The odds of Nashipai doing well academically were not high.

Nashipai in Tumaini’s extensive library, on the building’s third floor overlooking the landscape of Karatu.

As a young girl born and raised in the remote village of Alailelai, any education at all—let alone a solid one—would normally be hard to achieve. But given the opportunity to attend a private school in Karatu, Nashipai has flourished.

The 10-year-old Maasai student received top marks recently in a national assessment and took on the new school year in January in excellent standing.

“I like my subjects, my teachers and my friends,” she told us during a recent visit to Tumaini, the English language-based primary school Maasai Partners sponsors her to attend outside of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

As we made our way through school grounds, Nashipai eagerly led us and held our hands. Along with her classmates, she sang a welcoming song while showing off her dorm and excitedly pointing out where she sleeps and gets ready.

Tumaini Volunteer Coordinator Adrienne Luczkow and Maasai Partners Program Director Kim La Reau visit with Nashipai at school.

It was cute and aptly fitting that she was in Ngorongoro dorm, considering her home village. Now that she’s moved up to Class 3, she stays with the older girls in Manyara dorm (named after a nearby national park). It was clear that this student loves being at Tumaini. Her dorm mother even appointed her as prefect last year.

She values school so much, in fact, that for a culture day at Tumaini, she chose to memorize a poem about how ‘education is power.’

Though she boards at the school and is away from her family for long periods of time, Nashipai attends Tumaini alongside five other students from her village. She has countless other friends among the student body and is surrounded by a faculty that fosters a positive, healthy and personal environment.

Thriving at School

Nashipai, a Maasai girl from Alailelai, is flourishing at Tumaini, where she speaks English and Swahili with her friends.

Madame Christine, head of preprimary school and head of boarding, said Nashipai and Maasai Partners’ other sponsor students have “really changed from when they came.”

They are actively and happily participating in life at the school, partaking in classes, sports and other activities. This success is especially impressive considering the students knew only their native Maa when they first arrived at Tumaini.

They surmounted this language barrier and have continued on to fluidly switch between three languages—Maa, Swahili and English—giving them a leg up for success into the future.

We’re excited to see Nashipai continue to succeed as her education progresses. To contribute to her tuition, room or board or to sponsor a new student, visit our donate page.

Maasai Partners’ sponsor students stand with MP President and Founder Judy Lane during a recent visit.


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