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International Association of Special Education

Fostering a Global Exchange of Ideas and Information

Jaffery Academy - Intellectual Enhancement Unit (SEN)

Lake Manyara National Park Trip

By Liz Willis and Zamda Shaffi Mkiti

Students and staff from Jaffery Academy SEN prior to departing on their trip to Lake Manyara National Park. Kneeling in front from left: Gift, Ladi and Nancy. Standing from left: Physiotherapist Liz Willis, Jordan - Photographer, Chester - SEN Deputy, Zamda Shaffi Mkiti - Job Coach, and Swaleha Mohamedali - Head of SEN.

What does it take to bring a smile to a child’s face? The International Association of Special Education Volunteer Service Project provided the opportunity to find out when four students and two staff members of the Jaffery Academy Special Needs Department were privileged to visit the Lake Manyara National Park.

Irene and Sebastian, owners of Soko Adventure and Safari Ltd. in Arusha, Tanzania, teamed with IASE to provide a van and guide to introduce the group to their own local animals…close up! Elephants, lions, flamingos, giraffes, and more! And, yes…there were lots of smiles.

The students are receiving work experience in Arusha at McMoody’s Restaurant and the Pick & Pay Supermarket. They have spent about eight years at Jaffery Academy and now are generalizing their skills in the community.

The trip was educational and exciting for our students. They gave remarks such as “Look, monkeys can carry their babies on their chest.” And “Wow, elephants can cross the road by themselves.” The students behaved well throughout the whole journey. They reminded each other of the rules of maintaining the environment of the park, they respected each other and socialized with each other and also with their guide. The drive home was full of special recollections of what we had seen together.

We are all grateful to the IASE, to Jaffery Academy, and to Soko Adventure and Safari Ltd. for this chance to visit Manyara National Park. We hope that this is an experience that encourages families to involve their children of all abilities in their community.

by Mary Gale

Irene (orange shirt in the middle) and Sabastian on the left are owners of Soko Adventure and Safari Ltd. in Arusha, Tanzania. I have had the pleasure of traveling on safari with this company. They showed me animals up close and personal! I introduced Irene to Sally...neither knew the other ...and a friendship transpired. Irene did not know about Jaffery Academy and Sally did not know about Soko Adventure....and I was happy to connect these two dynamic ladies. The collaboration of Soko Adventure and the IASE GIVING Fund provided a true ADVENTURE for four of Sally's special students. These four students are now working at jobs in their own community and I was very impressed by them. Being able to see their own local animals on their trip to Lake Manyara Park was a special treat in their transition and acceptance into their community.  

Construction of Access Ramp at Jaffrey Academy

These photos show the progress being made in the construction of a ramp to the second floor of the Jaffery Academy's new SEN building. This ramp has been graciously funded by the Australian High Commission and Ron & Samira Shalhoub.

The new SEN building, under the captainship of Sally, continues to grow skyward with the help of many generous donors.

Sally is visiting the "Secret Garden" in which her students raise vegetables to sell and then use the funds for their transport expenses.

These creative playground toys were hand made by Dutch volunteers and are shared with all children who attend Jaffery Academy.

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