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The Rebels & Rolina

The Rebels & Rolina
Posted on 02/27/2018

Columbine High School's created a unique relationship with the Rolina Children's Home in Tanzania, Africa.

Columbine High School Establishes Strong Ties with Tanzanian Orphanage 

Rolina Children’s Home opened in 1999 when Rosmin Njau stumbled upon a sick child in the streets of Moshi in Northern Tanzania. Moshi sits at the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro, where many begin their journey up the mountain. Njau, a Mount Kilimanjaro guide, and his wife, Paulina, helped to care for the child. When they learned that he had no place to go, they invited him to stay in their home. Since then, Njau and Paulina estimate that over 500 children have passed through their home. Each child has a story, and some would not even be alive if it weren't for the Njaus.

While teaching primary school in Moshi, Chatfield High School teacher Jeff Garkow punted a soccer ball in the wrong direction while playing with some of his students and accidentally hit a man walking near the school. Garkow ran over to apologize and quickly struck up a conversation with the man, Rosmin Njau. Garkow learned that Njau and his wife ran a children's home for street kids, orphans, community members, and anyone who needs a place to stay or a warm meal. Njau invited Garkow to visit their home. When Garkow had time, he made his way to the Nijaus’ in Kwasadala, about 30 minutes from Moshi.

The Njaus introduced Garkow to some of the most incredible and resilient kids Garkow had ever met. For the past five summers, Garkow has returned with friends and coworkers from Columbine. To date, nine teachers from the Columbine community and five alumni have visited Rolina. The Njaus operate on a shoestring budget and receive no help from the government. In fact, there is not a single children’s home in the country that gets any benefits or monetary support from the government. However, the Njaus have created a tight-knit family, and the kids are happy and healthy.

Learn more about Columbine High School's relationship with the Rolina Children's Home here or below.

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