by The Lion of Judah Academy 850 Lives Impacted Tanzania
Pablo Picasso once famously said, “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” How do we nurture and dev...
How do we nurture and develop the artist which Picasso believed to exist within every child? This is an even greater challenge in Tanzania than it is in most other places in the world. Lion of Judah Academy school director, Josephales Mtebe, has lamented the sad state of education in music and the arts in Tanzania. Music is an indispensable part of the life of The Lion of Judah Academy, but the culture currently places no priority on music and the arts. Our students are creative, expressive, talented…but almost entirely self-taught!
The goal of The Lion of Judah Academy Music and Arts Building and Project is to change that. We are going to build what will be the only art and music program we are aware of at any primary school or secondary school, public or private, in Tanzania. The Music and Arts Building will be the center of the program.
Currently the school has no useable facility for art lessons, classes or projects...no place for individual or group music rehearsals, practice or instruction. There are no musical instruments apart from the keyboards used for worship and chapel, and a couple of guitars owned by individual students. While singing, dancing and making music are almost as much a part of daily life as breathing, there are no resources to help students cultivate their natural musical abilities and artistic talents. Students engage in many creative expressions, however without an organized program, so much of their creative and imaginative potential is left undeveloped.
In addition to the physical building there will be a keyboard, drums, recorders, string, woodwind and brass instruments, as well as music classroom supplies. Art supplies will include paint, brushes, charcoal, paper, chalk, clay and other materials and supplies for visual arts.
As students learn to creatively express themselves in arts and music they will find other areas of their lives and educational pursuits touched and enhanced. And when they leave the school with more fully developed skills in the fine arts they will be better able to creatively impact their communities and, we believe, the entire nation.
This project is the ‘brainchild’ of Dan and Paula Shaffer,
missionaries at The Lion of Judah Academy.
Paula is trained as a music educator and, as she has shared her vision
with school director Josephales Mtebe, he has enthusiastically endorsed and
supported the project because he has long dreamed of being able to offer a
program like this at the school.