Let’s communicate – about environment!

Kommunikation heißt miteinander in Beziehung sein – bei unserem Besuch an der Luduga Secondary School im Januar 2022 lernen wir Tomson Mwampamba kennen, der sich schnell als „Kommunikationstalent“ erweist: er sucht von sich aus den Kontakt, setzt sich beim Mittagessen zu uns an den Tisch, nimmt engagiert an den Workshops teil, begleitet uns übers Schulgelände und vor allem – er stellte Fragen!
Durch sein Interesse hat sich inzwischen ein reger Gedankenaustausch via Email/Signal entwickelt, der uns (fast täglich) voneinander lernen lässt. Erfreulicherweise konnten wir diesen Kontakt während unserer Begegnungsreise im August fortsetzen, weiter intensivieren und auf Korbinian ausweiten, der am EMG seit vielen Jahren im Wahlkurs Imkerei engagiert ist. So hieß es: „Let’s talk about bees!“
Tomson ist 34 Jahre alt, lebt mit seiner Frau und drei Töchtern in der Nähe der Schule (Luduga Village), unterrichtet Geographie und ist als „School Projects Master“ auch für den Bereich „Environment“ verantwortlich. Sein ganz besonderes Interesse gehört den Bienen – doch lassen wir ihn selbst erzählen

I teach about beekeeping free of charge because my burning desire is to see that my community is transforming by having positive minds. Most of the people have negative attitudes towards personal development, they think that we do things just because we are teachers. That’s why I take this chance to motivate them by teaching them on how to utilize natural resources found on our environment, for instance in forests. So the learners both at the village and at the school acquire the knowledge concerning environmental conservation, which enables them to employ themselves through entrepreneurship hence they are able to sustain their basic needs due to the products obtained from bees, like honey, wax etc. But I hope once the learners will have changed their mindsets and then the whole nation will change because the youth is the future generation.

Also I like to teach the students to have the spirit of hard working by telling them that you are the boss of your life – so make sure you work hard in order to reach to your destiny. I face the challenge that most of people have negative attitudes concerning entrepreneurship, but I try my level best to solve the problem by motivating them that nothing is impossible under the sun. It is my wish to contribute to the development of the society as well as the nation even to cross the borders as the way you did.

Ilembula Erosionsschäden
Erosion damage in Ilembula

Here most of the people are not aware about the importance concerning the environment. There is excessive deforestation due to agricultural activities, producing charcoal, gaining building materials and making furniture. Apart from that the issue of overgrazing also leads to soil erosion to great extent and hence to environmental destruction. These human activities take much influence on the impact of climatic change, like last year when the rain season started on January 15th. This was not normal – in other years it always started to rain in November, so this is the sign for the presence of hunger to societies; as a result many cattle died according to shortage of pasture. Furthermore, excessive deforestation and bush frying lead to a loss of biodiversity as well as to the advancement of science and technology. This produces soot and emission of carbon dioxide which destroys the ozone layer hence the sun rays reach to the earth directly which leads to skin cancer. This situation is known as global warming. In order to solve this problem I think we should practise what we call afforestation or reforestation and we should provide education to the mass so as to make the world safe. The vegetation cover plays a great role in preventing soil erosion. The plant is used to trap the CO2 through gas exchange and to utilize proper natural resources available in our environment. In the North it is believed that is where much CO2 is produced due to planes, cars and industries. Is that true? So, which are the measures taken to control this situation?

Now I started my project to make beehives. I signed a contract with the village in order to protect a forest for sustainable use; it is approximately about 145 acres large. I plan to put up beehives there for two years. Most of the people at Luduga are not aware of the importance of environmental conservation. So I take this chance to educate the community through learning by doing – practically. Also people are depending solely on agriculture but when there is climate change people suffer due to shortage of food hence they fail to participate fully in economic activities.

LUDSS conservation area and bee keeping

My expectation is
1. to provide education to the mass on the importance of environmental conservation.
2. to promote the resources found in the forest, for example products obtained from honey.
3. as a member of Schupa I’m supposed to transform the society through “grass roots”.
4. to build up (self)-confidence and to believe that we are able.
5. to stop dependency from abroad by doing various projects through entrepreneurship.

That is my ambition, so you are warmly welcome for any suggestions and mind-opening.

LUDSS conservation area and bee keeping

I put up beehives at Luduga Village at the place where forest is found; I started beekeeping in 2018 but after your workshop in January this year on building up one’s self-confidence hence I decided to add more beehives – me as a teacher and therefore as a mirror of society – so I reflected what to do: I now teach both in school and village on how to make beehives and how to harvest honey as well as to prepare products of honey. Yes, I teach my colleagues and students participating fully in the process of making beehives as well as planting trees at a reserved area at LUDSS; I believe, the students are the future generation, so the knowledge they acquire will help them to be self-employed rather than depending on employment from the government. On the reserved area we are planting fruit trees, also we have ten beehives and we will add ten more because about the forest we are in preparation. I hope in school we will start implementation in May, my burning desire is to see the whole community of LUDSS is rehabilitated physically and mentally. I will teach people at school and the village who are interested during holidays concerning the making of beehives and the importance of environmental conservation for sustainable use.

My instructor in beekeeping was Mr Mtitu Iburahim; he passed away. Yes, at LUDSS we teachers work as a team, also the students are very interested in these activities. I used to advise them so that they acquire the knowledge which will help them as the next generation. I hope they will transform the world. Bee keeping is very important in agriculture because the bees play a great role in pollination.

LUDSS conservation area and bee keeping
Tomson Mwampamba

I do all these activities to elevate poverty which here is the main source of deforestation due to agricultural activities and depending on charcoal and fire wood as the source of energy rather than using other sources of energy such as biomass, solar energy, wind, and electricity which is environment-friendly. Most of Tanzanians are used to complain about the government (political influence) and/or their parents with regard to their own poverty; they believe that it is caused by them; this statement is not true – as it is said by Bill Gates “to be born in a poor family is not your fault but to die poor is your fault”. That is why I said “you are the boss of your life”, which means: We are responsible to change the world and not anyone else – so we are supposed to share our ideas on how we are going to make sure that there is sustainability and how to make the world a safe place for everybody. Nothing is impossible under the sun – I mean, when you decide to do anything in this world, it is possible, it does not matter the situation. Wow! Let us work bega kwa bega or sambamba (which means together).

The lesson I learned is that everything I do I’m supposed to consider about others. That is the way I decided to start convincing other people in different activities so as they can get knowledge which helps them in their life. I used to move from one place to another looking for skills or knowledge or sharing ideas with experts concerning the activities I do. Sometimes I was required to pay and I did so because I knew that I invested in skill and knowledge which is useful to me.

In 2015 it was my first appointment to be employed by the Tanzanian Government at LUDSS.
In 2018 I bought a plot at Luduga Village; the area was so poor and bare, so I started working with it. Most of the people laughed at me, I can’t forget, they asked me why I bought such a bad plot. Why? By that time I told them that I’m a geographer and that I will change that plot (in geography we call it “land reclamation”), now they appreciate me for the changes I have made and I’m on progress you will see it when you come.

Also the SchuPa partnership teaches us to have positive attitudes and to help each other in South and North. Most of us before we had an inferiority complex towards the North but in the workshop Mr Edwin taught us through asking various question on how “to take position” – it was really very interesting and enjoyable.

Vielen Dank, Tomson Mwampamba, für die Erlaubnis, deine Gedanken und Fotos auf der SchuPa Homepage veröffentlichen zu dürfen.
Inzwischen hat Tomson 34 Beuten/Bienenbehausungen in der Conservation Area der Luduga Secondary aufgehängt.

Vom Schulleiter Wilhelm Mgaya wurde er als „offizieller“ Ansprechpartner und Kommunikator für SchuPa benannt.