Updates from Fr Bruno
Medicines and vitamins shipped by Boise medical team received. Security gates and fence projects at Ibumila completed. All family centers now have cows (Ibumila -6, Mafinga -2, Uwemba -1). Baby chickens project started to test raising many more chickens. Piano keyboard purchased and installed in Ibumila church. Music instructor is giving lessons to several matrons and children. We are caring for 155 kids this year. Overall, they are doing great!
Due to Coronavirus travel restrictions, the medical team has postponed their planned 2020 visit for 1+ year and is instead working remotely with Fr Bruno and Sr Margareth, to continue the focus on providing optimal nutrition and health monitoring and support for all our children. For some who came into our care with special needs, it’s arranging for specialized treatment like physical therapy or eye glasses. For all, it’s routine vaccinations, dental care, and a strong focus on a heathy diet.
TOUCO has invested heavily over the last several years with projects to expand each UPENDO family with options for milk with their own cow, more chickens for meat and eggs, fish pond development for fish, and avocado and fruit production at Madeke farm. All of these efforts support this nutritional foundational goal. They also align with Fr Bruno’s vision of fostering resilience and self-sufficiency in the children by providing hands-on practical life skills, education, training, and self-discipline, in order to be successful after they graduate.
New Convent house for Teresina Sisters – Ibumila
We thank God and all supporters for building this new Convent, for sure now we living as sisters. We have all rooms we need, chapel, sitting room, store, kitchen, mess and sleeping rooms inside the single building as seen below.
What do the Sisters do at TOUCO?
Sr Herena Nyama supervises all TOUCO farm projects (Madeke, Nderenyuma, Ikang’asi) and also maintains sewing cooperative machines when she is at home here in Ibumila.
Sr Frida Mdemu runs the church and all catechesis work. She manages, assists, and trains the matrons, and also helps run the small store that caters to local villagers.
Sr Margareth Tumaini deals with all children issues including background, relatives, home problems. She also deals with government (social welfare) preparing reports, receiving documents, children’s health, and teaching kindergarten.
- Break ground to build a home suitable for older TOUCO students who are unable to return to village or extended family after completing elementary school.
- Focus on job skills training opportunities for older students. Vocational training, apprenticeships, etc.
- Continue implementing and developing the Medical team recommendations. Customized physical therapy plans for several children with developmental issues. Ongoing C-19 safety.
- Modest increases in acres planted of avocado, casava, and tree planting and management. Expansions of family animal enclosures (cows, pigs, chickens).
- The board is working to set up a TOUCO Foundation for long term financial support of Fr Bruno’s mission. If you are able to make a large donation now, or would like to include TOUCO in your will / estate planning, please reach out so we can include you in these important planning efforts.