Monday, May 28, 2018

A Car for Emusoi

Annamaria on Monday



The beautiful young women with me in the photo above are from pastoralist tribes in Tanzania, Africa.  In their culture, girls their age—between twelve and fourteen—can expect to undergo female circumcision and shortly thereafter be sold into marriage by their fathers or male guardians.  The men who take them in marriage are ordinarily around four times their age.  The bride price is typically in cows, but I have heard one story where the girl was twelve, the prospective husband fifty-seven, and the price a truckload of beer.

These girls come from remote villages that don’t have secondary schools.  Ordinarily, they would have no place in society, no way of surviving unless they accepted their traditional fate.  The Tanzanian Ministry of Education places pastoralist girls as one of the most disadvantaged groups in the country.  The marriages they are forced into often make them a third or fourth wife—at the mercy, not only of their husbands, but also of his older wives.

This is happening now.  Not in the Middle Ages.  Not a hundred years ago.  NOW!

What do you think?  Shall we do whatever we can to give these girls an alternative?  To help them finish their education and actualize their potential as human beings?  Shouldn’t we?

Thank you!  I thought you would say yes.

Let’s talk about how:

For the past twenty years, the Emusoi Centre in Arusha Tanzania has given pastoralist girls a new lease on life.  Through Emusoi, over fourteen hundred just such girls have finished their education.  They are now doctors, lawyers, accountants, teachers, and nurses.  Many have returned to their villages with their new capabilities.  Now, they provide medical care, education, and advocacy for their people.  But even more important—they are role models for the girls growing up around them.  And examples to all of what women can become.

Some of the girls in the picture ran away from their villages to Emusoi for the chance to go to school.  Some were taken there by mothers who risked beatings in order to give their daughters a better life than they have had.

So why do they need a car?

Emusoi is not a secondary school.  It is a refuge.  Once they take in the girls, the staff of Emusoi gives them remedial training to prepare them to succeed once they are admitted to further education.  The girls need the car so the staff can transport them to apply to schools, to take entrance examinations, and to move in once they are admitted.  Emusoi’s staff also uses the Centre’s car for rescue missions:  Sometimes, when a student goes home to her village for a visit, her father spirits her off in order to trade her away for some cows or for a wife for one of his sons.  The Emusoi staff then has to chase through the wilderness to find her so they can bring her back to school.  I am not making this up!

The car that provides for all these activities is now twenty years old, nearing the end of its useful life.

Girls needing rescue have to have a car that will get to them without breaking down.  Otherwise, they may be lost for good.  But also keep in mind that the Centre’s car transports them to medical appointments, brings in grocery shopping, all the things a family needs a car to do.

Before the old buggy becomes totally unreliable, help me replace it with a brand new one.

Emusoi is a big family. The car the girls need holds twelve, including the driver.  For $50,000, we can get them a 2018 Toyota Long Body Land Cruiser, built for Tanzania—to stand up to the bad roads (or no roads) one finds in wilderness areas.  
I am hoping to raise the entire amount and will match whatever donation you make by fifty percent. So your donation of $30 will become $45. Your $100 will become $150.  Your $1000 will become $1500.

Then, we will be able to buy them this!


This is your chance to improve the lives of girls and help them become the women of the future.  Please don’t pass it up.

Here is the link to a special fund set up on the Maryknoll Missionary website:

The link:

Note: In the "Prayer intentions/notes"  field, write "Emusoi Centre-vehicle/Sr. Mary Vertucci"*

To make your donations in the form of a check or money order, send to:

Maryknoll Sisters
Box 317
Maryknoll, NY 10545-0311

Please make checks payable to Maryknoll Sisters, New York with “Emusoi Center-vehicle” on the memo line. *

*Be sure to write in this notation, so that I can identify your donation and contribute another 50% in your name.

Every dollar you donate will go towards a car that will help transport these girls into the future they deserve.


1 comment:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.