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Pack your bags for Tanzania

Pack your bags for global mission trip to Tanzania

Habari gani or “What’s the news?” in Swahili is an important phrase to know if you are traveling to Tanzania, East Africa. And the news is Women of the ELCA Women Building Global Community (WBGC) travel seminar will take you to Tanzania Nov. 6-14, 2015.*

International guests gathered for a reception Saturday evening, July 26, at the Ninth Triennial Gathering. From left are the Rev. Esther Ngomuo from Tanzania and serving Nashville's Christ Lutheran Church; and Mary Laiser and Sara Lomayani from Tanzania, North Central Diocese.

Why Tanzania?  As we look toward celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation in 2017, we’ll retrace many of the same steps we did when we visited Tanzania in 2000. Tanzania has 20 companion synod relationships through the ELCA Companion Synod Relationships program. And, our Ninth Triennial Gathering international guests from Tanzania invited us!

The focus of the seminar will be daily discipleship and community. We will engage women in their daily ministry at Mwangaza’s Binti/Mama Initiative that trains intergenerational groups of women on issue of health, HIV/AIDS, nutrition, conflict resolution and gender violence. We will also visit Lutheran World Relief projects and see the impact of women on the economy through women’s co-ops and small business. We will worship and fellowship with Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania Women in local churches. And of course you can’t make a trip to Tanzania without a day of safari. We'll make the journey with women from the East Africa region.

Making Plans

Cost The final cost will be determined by the number of travelers. We currently have a quote of $3,400, which is based on the minimum number for group travel. This quote is inclusive of domestic and international airfare, meals, lodging, ground transportation, visa and travel fees, gratuities and safari.

Program We are committed to practicing accompaniment with our sisters in Tanzania, which calls for flexibility.  Since we will not have all the answers to your questions before you need to make your decision, consider— there will be in-country travel, to both rural and urban settings. The average temperature in November is 80s (high) and 59 (low).  This is not a tourist experience and many amenities are modest with limited options.  The itinerary will be set in consultation with our host.

Time line We will assist you in creating your own plan for financing your trip. The time line will include a schedule for making payments, when passport and traveler’s information are due. The first deadline is June 15 at the latest to secure you space with a $300 non-refundable deposit. At that time an account will be opened for you so that you and others contribute at any time.

Next Step You will need to respond to this invitation to receive future updates and alerts. Remember you can begin this process at any time before the June 15 deadline. Though we look to create a diverse group of travelers with limited spaces available, it is important to reserve your spot as soon as possible. Pray for Women of the ELCA  and all who are discerning whether to join this experience.

*Exact days may change to accommodate the program being planned, availability of resource persons and travel cost.

For more information, contact Valora Starr, 800-638-3522, ext. 2741 | valora.starr@elca.org