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In the summer of 2009, CWEF TZ chair Julie Caron participated in a Cross Cultural Solutions’ Volunteer Abroad Program in the rural village of Boma Ng’ombe Tanzania, East Africa. She was placed in a small home run by one of the most inspirational women that she had ever met ‐ Mary Massawe. In Tanzania, minimal government assistance is given to help orphans and at-risk youth; there are no state‐run orphanages. Additionally, only limited public education is available to those who cannot afford to attend a private school. It was Mary’s dream to establish a small orphanage that would provide a safe, loving, healthy environment so that the children would be able to attend school daily, receive an education, and ultimately make a valuable contribution to the country. Inspired by Mary’s passion and commitment to improving the lives of others, Julie returned to Canada motivated to help Mary achieve her vision. Less than two months after returning home, Julie received some very sad and shocking news from Tanzania. Mary had passed away from spinal meningitis as a complication of AIDS.

“Mary was an amazing friend and a remarkable woman. She welcomed me into her home and taught me so much; although we only knew each other for a short time, she was like family to me. She was a selfless, hard working, loving and generous woman with a huge heart. Mary touched everyone with whom she established a relationship. She will be missed by many but especially by her two daughters, Dorcas and Agape, and the eight girls she was looking after as if they were her own. I love these girls very much and am concerned as to what their fate will be now that Mary has passed on. They are bright, dedicated young girls who deserve a chance at a decent future. Their education was so important to Mary and is still very important to myself.” ‐ Julie Caron, October 2009.

Determined to keep Mary’s spirit alive, Julie established a partnership with Mary’s siblings. Timothy and Joyce Massawe have taken up Mary’s cause and are the founding members of the Saidia Agriculture and Social Care Organization (SASCO). SASCO, which was granted
 NGO status from the United Republic of Tanzania on September 20, 2011, is committed to helping and supporting orphans and widows using agricultural products obtained in Tanzania, through education development and economic improvement based on a community cooperative spirit.

For her part, in order to formalize fundraising efforts in Canada, Julie approached the Canadian World Education Foundation (CWEF). In October 2011, the CWEF Board approved the establishment of a Tanzanian Chapter of CWEF in principle. Final approval for CWEF Tanzania was received on November 29, 2011.