All packed and ready for a Tanzanian adventure

By Rachael Grealish

A GROUP of West Cumbrian students are all packed and ready to head off on a trip of a lifetime to Tanzania.

Ready for adventure: The 2016 CRCL outward group all packed and ready to go. Picture by Robert Haile

Ready for adventure: The 2016 CRCL outward group all packed and ready to go. Picture by Robert Haile

The Cumbria Rungwe Community Link (CRCL) are heading to Rungwe, Tanzania as part of a cultural exchange between the two communities.

The group is made up of school pupils from West Lakes Academy and St Benedicts and adult leaders.

For the pupils this is the climax of their two-year involvement with the charity – during which time they have raised over £20,000 fundraising.

While in Tanzania the students will partake in visits to schools around the district of Rungwe, a rehabilitation school for disabled children, home visits to meet with the Tanzanian students they bonded with during the CRCL inward visit – in which six Tanzanian pupils travelled to Cumbria for a month – and visit local places of interest such as a tea plantation and factory.

The cultural visit will last a month and will see the pupils working as a team with the leaders.

The pupils packed over a dozen bags to take with them, filled with text books, stationery and essentials, to give to the Tanzanians, who are in need of them.

Kate Starkey, a West Lakes Academy (WLA) pupil from St Bees, said: “I’m just really excited to go and hopefully see everyone we met last year again.

“I’m a bit nervous, because we’ll be gone for a month, and a bit apprehensive, but still excited.”

Carly MacLeod, an English Language teacher at WLA, will be heading out to Tanzania as a leader for the first time this year.

She said: “I’m really excited for the students and really impressed with all the hard work they’ve put in, they’ve just got stuck in and done really well.”

When speaking to all the pupils the mood before leaving was apprehension, but mainly excitement.

The students are in Tanzania for a month before returning – when many will be heading to university.

At the bag packing they also named their top fundraiser, Becca Williamson, 19, from WLA – who took part in 32 fundraisers over the two years.