In early 2009, Fr Rogasian Msami invited interested parishioners from Holy Family Catholic Parish in Albany, Western Australia to accompany him to his home village of Tarakea to experience a small slice of African life. We were promised ‘an experience of a lifetime’ – a promise fulfilled.

And so during September 2009, a group of 12 Albany parishioners accompanied Fr Msami to his home country of Tanzania. Whilst there, the group travelled to Fr Msami’s home village of Tarakea situated at the base of Mt Kilimanjaro. Here they had the opportunity to tour St Pius X Catholic Primary School and meet many of the students. Holy Family Parish has provided sponsorship to a number of the orphans who attend the school.

Our group also visited the orphans in their homes where they are cared for by members of their extended families – aunts, uncles, grandparents and sometimes even members of the St Pius X parish community. It was during this time we came to understand that education is definitely the way to a brighter future for all of the children. Unfortunately, many cannot afford to pay school fees.

On returning to Albany, it was a unanimous decision to offer continued financial support to help cover the costs of education for the orphaned children. And so Hope of Tarakea was formed.