Written by Daniel

Daniel Returns to Toloha

Posted by on Aug 14, 2013 in Clean Water, Praise Report, Program Update, Written by Daniel | 0 comments

My trip to Toloha Village this year was quite different than any other trip I have ever made to Tanzania. This trip made me feel more optimistic, encouraged and excited. It brought back all the memories of my vision for my people: To bring them clean water, build a clinic, church, and orphanage, advance education, and make sanitation improvements. Also, this was the first time I was joined by my Christian brothers from the USA who have a strong desire to help my people in the village. They have made a commitment to initiate a long-term partnership with the villagers. They are joining me to share the burden that I have been carrying for almost 12 years now. When we arrived at the village, the whole village was shaken and almost everyone came out to meet us. The people in the village were happy to see me back home again, and even more excited that I was not alone. The villagers were anxious, happy, and eager to meet these Americans who made the journey with me because our USA team had spoken with many of the villagers prior to our trip on conference calls from the USA. They knew of our desire to help them. The welcome smiles in some of the photos can justify my words. The village had organized cooks and donated food, goats, sheep and so many more things that I don’t have time to mention them all here. To me, it was a joyous day in the village. In fact, I couldn’t believe that it was really happening! I wanted to cry, but I refrained from bursting into tears. In our culture, we are taught to be strong in many situations so not to show weaknesses and that it is culturally unacceptable to cry in public. I thanked everyone who came to meet us. It was such a strong and energetic welcome. I will never forget this day as long as I live. Some of the villagers told me, “Now, Daniel, we have believed that you have not forgotten us and your village. We hope many young men and women from the village who live in town and in cities in Tanzania or outside the country will follow your footsteps.”  One older gentleman in the village said to me, “Daniel, it is better if God takes me home first and lets you live longer to help the people in the villages across this country.” What amazing stories from the villagers! Now, I see the rainbow of hope coming up from far beyond the clouds. I pray to God that everyone in the village can live to see this rainbow of hope. The hope of getting clean water in the village, the hope of bringing revival to the village, the hope of a better future for everyone in the village, and this hope will shine like a morning star from Toloha village – the Kilimanjaro region – to other villages in Tanzania and across Africa. May God make it happen someday! “Kumbuka Kijijini” Remember the Village Daniel Makoko is native to Toloha Village and now lives in Greenville, North Carolina. He arrived in North Carolina 12 years ago and began telling the story of his village. Read more of his story here and...

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Daniel’s Story Part 2 – The Road from Tanzania to the USA!

Posted by on May 24, 2013 in Daniel's stories, Written by Daniel | 0 comments

As a young man, Daniel felt a deep obligation to help his mother and father who were continuing to struggle in the Toloha village in Tanzania.  After Daniel completed his secondary education, his brother encouraged him to pursue a job and send money home rather than returning to the village.  Daniel started working at Mkwaja Ranch for a prominent British family and quickly earned the respect of his boss. Daniel was a valued and trusted employee and was promoted and transferred several times.     During that time, some of Daniel’s friends decided to apply for the Diversity Visa Lottery.  The Diversity Visa Lottery is a program sponsored through the US Government, which offers 55,000 permanent residence US visas yearly to individuals from countries with low US immigration.  Daniel did not know much about the program but filled out the application along with his friends and sent it in with no real hope of anything more.  Over a year later Daniel received a very large packet in the mail from the New Hampshire Visa Center.  Daniel immediately opened it and tried to read it but he had very poor English so he was not able to understand it.  A friend read it to him and he realized it was a chance to go to the USA! Even with this amazing opportunity before him, the requirements for a visa still seemed impossible for Daniel. His friends did not think he was going to be able to make it happen. And he didn’t – God did! There were visa fees, a medical exam and a large sum of money that had to be paid in order for him to attain the visa. The other option was to find a sponsor – someone in the USA to agree to help him financially if needed. Daniel did not know anyone in the USA.  He tried desperately to locate a sponsor but he had no contacts in the USA to aide him.  It was discouraging, but he just could not let himself give up.  With the visa application deadline only a few months away, Daniel was in town working when he ran into the brother of his friend Joshua, who Daniel knew in high school. The brother told Daniel that Joshua was in the USA! The brother was in a hurry and quickly wrote down Joshua’s email address for Daniel and then ran off.  The Internet was not available in many places, so while in town, Daniel took the opportunity to send Joshua an email. He told Joshua about his opportunity to come to the USA, but described all the obstacles he was facing – they money it required and leaving his wife and child in Tanzania. Joshua responded and said he would help find a sponsor for Daniel.  Within a few weeks, Joshua had found Daniel a sponsor in the United States! Now the deadline was less than one month away, so Daniel immediately took the completed paperwork and went to the US Embassy.  He didn’t have an appointment, but surprisingly Daniel was allowed to meet with the US consular.  Daniel entered the office, and the consular said, “Are you ready to go to the USA?” Daniel stood in awe as the consular stamped his paperwork and handed them back to Daniel. Daniel’s visa was approved for entry to the USA!  Daniel walked out of the embassy with such excitement and disbelief, and then as he was leaving, he heard orders for everyone to immediately leave the US Embassy. The date was September 11, 2001. Daniel later learned about the attack on twin towers...

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Daniel’s Story

Posted by on Apr 26, 2013 in Daniel's stories, Written by Daniel | 0 comments

Pictured above: Daniel, his wife and 2 sons. Photo by Lindsay Corrigan About one month ago, anyone who googled “Toloha” would get nothing from the search engine related to Toloha, Tanzania – not even on Google maps. And now, this www.TolohaPartnership.org is the first or second link leading to the village of Toloha, and our Facebook page is the next – gotta love the world wide web!  Our team would like to take this opportunity to introduce the world to Toloha and share why we love the people there so much.  It all started with Daniel. Daniel’s story is amazing, and there is so much to share that we are going to break it up into parts. Part 1 is all about Daniel’s childhood. Daniel Makoko was born and raised in Toloha, Tanzania.  Toloha is a rural village in the Kilimanjaro region of Tanzania (near the border of TZ and Kenya).  Daniel was the last born in his family with 2 older brothers and an older sister.  Daniel’s family raised cattle and crops for a living however when Daniel was very young all 50 of his family’s head of cattle were stolen and never returned.  Daniel’s father had no money to replace the cattle so they resorted to farming as their sole livelihood.  By the time Daniel reached the age of 4 or 5, his siblings had all left the village of Toloha for various reasons (education, jobs, etc).  Daniel’s mother often left the village for months at a time to visit with his sister in the city, leaving Daniel and his father alone in the village. Daniel was left with responsibilities such as gathering firewood, cooking meals, farming and fetching water all while trying to attend primary school.   “It was difficult to manage school because of food – sometimes I did not get to go to school because of other things I had to do…” commented Daniel. “I grew up a very destitute life, a life where you don’t know if you will get a meal or if you will have a better future or if you will even see tomorrow.”  Daniel knows what it means to be hungry, thirsty, hopeless and without Christ. Once Daniel completed primary school his brother invited him to move to the city to continue his education.  Daniel’s brother paid his school fees but soon Daniel’s brother was transferred to another city for his work.  Daniel then had to be enrolled in a boarding school, which was much more expensive.  Daniel’s brother continued to pay his school fees although there were times when Daniel was expelled from school because of lack of money.  Daniel’s brother always found a way to help Daniel return to school and after overcoming much adversity Daniel completed his secondary education in 1991! Please look for Part 2 of Daniel’s story...

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