$28,033 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 114 people in 4 months
Bibiana and Tindi Mashamba are two remarkable young orphans from Tanzania who have suffered extreme physical and emotional trauma.  They came to the United States three years ago seeking medical treatment and asylum.  Despite all they have endured, these determined and resilient girls are dedicated students, eager to make up for missed school years.  We are sharing their story to raise money for their education at Besant Hill School – a boarding school that can accommodate their unique needs.  Your donation of any amount will help Tindi and Bibiana continue on their path to success, a path they so greatly deserve.  We are also asking that you join hands with us and help spread the word to your friends. 
Joanna Lancaster – educator/filmmaker
Harriet Brown - writer/designer

 Hear them tell their story in their own words:  

Bibiana and Tindi were both born with Albinism, a genetic condition characterized by a lack of melanin pigment in the skin, hair, and eyes. This has presented the girls with numerous medical challenges.  This also made them outcasts in Tanzania, vulnerable to assault by Black Magic followers intent on mutilating Albinos for body parts which they believe hold magical power.

Tragically, the girls’ mother died when Tindi was still an infant.  Their father died of AIDs several years later. Just three days after their father’s funeral, the girls awoke in the middle of the night to intruders knocking down the door of their unprotected home. Tindi, the younger sister, paralyzed with fear, lay hidden under blankets, a silent and profoundly traumatized witness to the terror, while practitioners of a witchcraft cult hacked off Bibiana's leg and two fingers. Bibi almost bled to death, but miraculously both sisters made it out alive. 

 This is where the African Millennium Foundation (AMF) came into the picture.  Yrneh Gabon Brown, a USC student researching the killing, hunting and prosecution of albinos alerted Malena Ruth, co-founder of the AMF, that Bibiana urgently needed help.  Her ill-fitting and painful protheses needed replacing.  Malena found an American doctor willing to help.  She then arranged for the girls and their guardian, Al-Shymaa Kway-Geer, the first Albino member of Tanzania’s Parliament, to visit Los Angeles and stay at the Ronald McDonald House in Pasadena.  Shortly after arrival, Tindi was diagnosed with a life-threatening case of tuberculosis that required her to be hospitalized at Children's Hospital in isolation for over three months.

AFM founder Malena Ruth with Bibiana & Tindi

The girls’ guardian was called back to Tanzania after a month.  Because Bibiana’s recovery and rehab was going to be extensive, and Tindi was still hospitalized, Malena Ruth opened her heart and became their new legal guardian.  It was apparent to Malena that the sisters faced many challenges due to gaps in their healthcare and education.  She was able to obtain asylum for the girls and continues to work tirelessly on their behalf. 

Legally blind, Bibiana and Tindi both need additional adaptive instruments to navigate life and participate fully in the world around her.

The specialists who have worked with Tindi and Bibiana, academically as well as psychologically, agreed that a small boarding school setting would provide them with the ideal atmosphere and tools necessary to help them reach their potential.  Besant Hill School, an Ojai boarding school with an intimate and nurturing educational environment, seemed suited best for the girls’ unique physical and academic challenges.

Tindi and Bibiana are thriving at Besant Hill School.

Diligent students, with truly remarkable spirits, they are eager to make up for the years of lost schooling. However, their highly specialized education comes at a cost. Both girls have up to another 3 years of secondary schooling ahead with a yearly tuition of $65,000 each.

The funds raised through this campaign will go directly to the sisters’ educational expenses.   Any additional monies collected will be used to cover costs related to Tindi and Bibiana’s immigration case and their many healthcare issues.  Bibiana requires another prosthetic designed to allow her to run more easily and take part in school sports.  Tindi also requires surgery to correct damage suffered from tuberculosis, 

Tindi and Bibiana hope to return to Tanzania someday. Currently they would be at great risk and therefore face an uncertain future.  We firmly believe that if the girls are to find happiness, success and empowerment, education will be their lifeline. Your donation of any amount helps make their goals a reality.

Bibiana andTindi with Joanna  and  Harriet 

We appreciate your support and participation in spreading the word: https://www.gofundme.com/helpBibiandTindi
Watch news story about the sisters at:  



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$28,033 of $50,000 goal

Raised by 114 people in 4 months
Funds raised will benefit:
African Millennium Foundation
  Certified Charity
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Beverly Hills, CA
EIN: 954787785
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Manami Hunt
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