The School of St Jude, Arusha, Tanzania

EA_S 264_cropThe School of St Jude is a charity-funded school that was started by the vision and efforts of Gemma Rice (now Sisia), who left Australia after university to volunteer as a teacher in Uganda.  She believed education was the best way to fight poverty. After receiving a piece of land from her father-in-law and with help from family, friends and Rotary Clubs, the building of St Jude’s began in 2001.

Beginning with one volunteer teacher and three students in 2002, St Jude’s now provides over 1,800 students with a free, high-quality education from Primary Class 1 through to Secondary Form 6 (Yr 12 or A-level) across three campuses, with boarding rooms provided for over 1,200.  Students also receive nourishing food and fresh water, annual medical checks and access to computer labs and libraries filled with books.


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St Jude’s provides employment for over 400 Tanzanians including teachers, administrators, cleaners, cooks, gardeners, bus drivers, tradesmen and maintenance staff. Essential goods required to run the school are purchased from local people so the positive economic ripple effect is wide spread. St Jude’s also have a fleet of 23 buses to ensure safe and reliable transport for their students and staff everyday.


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stjudes_1Respect, responsibility, honesty and kindness are highly valued and embedded into the St Jude’s education process.

St Jude’s has a very active visitor and organised tour group program. Marie visited St Jude’s in January 2013 after crashing a safari with a friend’s family. By the way, the safari was arranged flawlessly by Gemma’s travel company Safaris R Us.

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For more information about St Jude’s and ways that you can support the school, through sponsorship, donation or by volunteering, visit:


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