Friday, 16 November 2012

The Economy

rereWednesday November 14th

 It appears I might actually get a week’s holiday at the end of my stint.  The plan is now to close the school and send the students home on December 2nd.  Why? It seems there is not enough money left in the kitty to feed them all for the last week of term.    The main reason for this is not poor housekeeping but the fact that many of the parents still haven’t completed paying for their fees for the year.  I suppose the solution in future would be to insist upon these being paid ‘up front’ but I feel that if that was the case the result might be a drop in numbers, as hard pressed parents decide education isn’t perhaps as high up the list of priorities as they thought.

 Another of Cliff’s questions concerned the local economy and where people were employed.  In the villages there seems to be quite a lot of subsistence farming where enough is grown, plant and animal, to survive on but little more.  There are quite a few fishing dhows in Pangani and one offshoot of the electricity cut the other evening was that, without any light pollution, there was clear view out to sea towards what looked like a string of pearls spreading completely across the horizon.  These were the lights on the fishing boats  which for some reason were not dotted about all over the place as you would expect but in a straight evenly spaced line.  I will have to investigate why this is.  Tourism is obviously a means of employment as there are a small number of hotels and camps around.  This is one of my contributions to the local economy as for most of the time I am the only guest at the YMCA and am then responsible for the wages for five people.  There are a number of rock breakers as I pictured back in September but there isn’t though a large employer as such.  The nearest sisal plantations are a good distance away and there minimal labour needs are covered by the surrounding villages.  The other main source of employment can be lumped together into service industries, from operating a sewing machine or cutting hair through the countless small shops/outhouses selling hot and cold food, to the local army personnel, police etc and of course Daladala conductors.  I suppose as there is no reliance on a large firm that could ‘pull up roots’ at any time and move on, there is a certain stability in the local community.

Time for packing now as I will have a quick turn round tomorrow, as after school I am going straight off to Tanga to prepare for my trip to Dar.


No comments:

Post a Comment