UNAWE-Tanzania is a branch of Universe Awareness (UNAWE), an international project which expose very young children in under-privileged environments on the scale and beauty of the universe. It illustrates the multicultural origins of modern astronomy in an effort to broaden children’s minds, awaken their curiosity in science and stimulate global citizenship and tolerance. It uses the sky and children’s natural fascination as a ground to create an international awareness of our place in the universe and our place on Earth.
UNAWE Tanzania is a registered non-profit organization initiated by volunteering Tanzanian youth aiming at awaking science curiosity among Tanzanian children from the very young ages. It works mainly with primary school pupils and teachers in Tanzania, but also partners with different national and international organizations to reach the goal; it offers teaching materials to teachers, children as well as interested individuals and collaborates with other organizations to conduct teachers’ trainings for primary school teachers in Tanzania.
Currently the organization has established 15 science clubs in 15 primary schools within six different regions of Tanzania which includes Dar-es-salaam, Pwani, Morogoro, Zanzibar, Kilimanjaro and Arusha. The organization is maintaining close contact with these clubs through regional representatives and teachers, though there is a need to improve the use of computers at primary school level in Tanzania to foster real time communication.
Why astronomy? It is a very old science with great contribution to modern sciences, it has been used as a tool for curiosity by the great scientists of all times, it has given a great contribution to human civilization in different cultures which exists on planet Earth, it is also a versatile academic field which can give exposure to other fields of study from arts, physics, mathematics, chemistry biology and geography to children.