The School of St Jude was established by Richard and Gemma Sisia in 2002. The original two acres of land on which the first classrooms were built was granted to the school by Richard and his family.
The name “St Jude” was given to the school because St Jude is known in Christian circles as “the patron saint of hopeless causes”. Trying to build a school from scratch with no real expertise or resources surely qualified as a “hopeless cause”! However, nine years later, The School of St Jude not only educates approx 1650 students across three campuses (with over 1000 of them boarding), but also gives employment to over 400 local Tanzanian staff.
Over 95% of the students get a totally free education, thanks to the thousands of supporters around the world. These supporters not only give financially to the school, but they also give their personal time at the school, thereby allowing more Tanzanian children the opportunity to receive a free, quality education.
St Jude's loves visitors, so there is a staff team available who are solely dedicated to hosting guests at the school. As part of your overall East African holiday, consider staying 2-3 days at the school.
1. Visit the home of one of the students
2. Eat with the students and staff at lunch time
3. Participate at a school assembly (or two!)
4. Assist with simple jobs which help the school (for example, covering library books) and extra curricular activities
5. Travel on the morning and after school buses
6. Travel to local markets with the school purchasing officer to buy fresh food and materials
7. Observe operation of the boarding complexes
8. Observe over 350 staff working together to educate hundreds of St Jude's students.
There is guest accommodation at the school which is basic but comfortable. Each room has its own bathroom with a flushing toilet and hot water shower. Your meals will be determined based upon the agreement you make with the school prior to arrival and the number of guests visiting at that time. The two options are: eating with the western staff in their common kitchen (photo below) or having private meals provided by a cook in a separate kitchen.