Planning – 2008

Tanzania AwaitsThis blog contains excerpts from my hand-written diary from five years ago. Since that time I have been to Africa mutliple times and therefore have shyness about some of my perceptions and ideas that I no longer hold. But that is growth so I will leave those embarrassing things in. The purpose of my university’s program in Africa was to install solar-powered water pasteurizers at two secondary schools in the remote NW area of Tanzania. I would travel with 5 engineering students (seniors and top of the class I’m told). I have always been engineer-y so we shall see what this trip brings. Highlights for today:

  1. Dealing with end-of-semester business (grades), etc.
  2. Younger son, Erik, not feeling well
  3. Preparing for Christmas
  4. Feeling ‘called’ to go to Africa.

Engineers on the trip: Prof: Kaye; Students: Ann (leader); Andre; Andrew; Jason; and Tom. We had a couple of get togethers prior to the trip and I felt I would fit in well. All were considerate and eager for the trip. I did not have time to explore the background of the project given the nature of how I was brought on board.

The solar powered water pasteurizer was the result of a project led by a St. Thomas professor. The pasteurizer was designed for one family in Mali and presentation notes and papers led one to believe it was successful. Our team learned later of known design problems with the valve and were disappointed to learn that those had not been resolved into a working prototype anywhere. I was informed later that the design flaw rendered the technology useless.

About the Author
President/CEO - Educate Tanzania. While serving as an advisor in Tanzania in 2008, she learned about plans for a university and wanted to help. In 2010, she resigned her tenured position from the University of St. Thomas to devote herself to building Karagwe University College in Tanzania. Since then Hansen has led efforts to ‘bring education, water and health to the neediest part of the world.' Hansen has received numerous awards for her work and has published over 50 articles and 2 books. She serves on editorial and advisory boards and has led educational initiatives in the United States, Australia, Puerto Rico, and Africa. Raised on a farm herself, Jan feels called to help open doors for the women and men in Karagwe just as doors were opened for her.

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