Thare Machi Education was formerly known as the Starfish Initiative but due to confusion with several other charities we reverted to the name that was originally registered with the Charity Commission.
Thare Machi means starfish in an Indian language. Why starfish? – because of a story I heard in Uganda about a young girl walking along a beautiful beach and the tide was going out and thousands of starfish were left dying. She went along and threw them back into the water.
An old man passed by and said, what good do you think you are doing, look at the thousands of starfish. She replied, I know what good I am doing to this one and threw it back into the water.
We may not be able to change the world but we can do something to help. TME, as it is known now, was started as a result of my experiences in the developing world.
Whilst working for Mildmay I saw so many people who had AIDS as either a direct or indirect result of prostitution. I decided that education was the best way of helping and the most cost-effective means was through modern technology.
We work with partners in eight African countries, India, and Cambodia and at the moment have 29 lessons in 35 languages ointeractive DVD discs. Most of the lessons are on health issues as this iwhat our partners want.
The last disc is somewhat different. Pimps are buying houses to turn into brothels around the stadiums for the World Cup in South Africa and are at this moment purchasing, kidnapping and cajoling children to put into these houses. Our discs are warning the children of the hazards and are to be shown in the schools.
We are distributing 50,000 discs to go into 230,000 schools (they will have to share to start with) costing £15,000, which is excellent,but they have to be shipped over, which will be quite costly.
We are also making our own discs and need software to help us expedite our output, which will cost us £4000, so these two things are what we are working on now.
However the most important thing that we need is prayer. We are working amongst people with no scruples, so please do remember TME in your prayers.
For more information our website is www.tme.org.uk <http://www.tme.org.uk>
Helen Taylor Thompson
Thare Machi Education