Started From The Bottom
Mandy first met Mama Faraji and the 78 Tuleeni Orphans in 2011 as a volunteer. The Tuleeni Ophanage facilities at that time were only suitable for about 30 children. Children slept, in tattered clothes, six per a bed on stained foam mattress pads with no sheets or mosquito nets. Their living situation was dire. Mama had truly given every bit of herself to help provide for these children, but had exhausted what limited resources were available to her.
The Beginning of Something Great
After knowing Mandy for just a few hours, Mama told her that in all the years she has been running an orphanage and working with volunteers, she had never seen the kind of passion and dedication that filled Mandy’s eyes. In 2010, with the help of a volunteer named Jackie Weiss, Mama Faraji was able to purchase a large plot of land in Uru that she hoped would one day serve as the location of a renovated orphanage. Mama said that there was something about 20-year-old Mandy that made her believe she was the one who would be able to turn this dream into a reality. Within six months, Mandy had raised enough money to break ground on construction. Mandy moved to reside in Tanzania in June 2013 to oversee the construction.
Constructing the new Tuleeni Orphanage was Neema International’s first project. Neema International continues to provide for the Tuleeni Orphans nutrition, clothing and education through NIESP and Uru Academy.