The Catenian's Bursary Fund

Zachary Burgess went to Tanzania in 2014 to help teach English to the orphans and street children, his trip was part funded by a bursary from the Catenians.  On his way to Iringa, he got stuck in Dar Es Salaam as there was no public transport running and ended up staying a week with a chap who ran a school where the whole family lived in one room and which became the classroom during the day!  The only shower in the house was a tin bucket in the yard and a jug of cold water!  Zach then went on a nine hour bus journey to Iringa. At the end of his period of volunteering in Iringa, he had arranged to go up Mount Kilimanjaro but unfortunately fell ill. After a couple of days with what was thought to be Malaria Zach was carried down the mountain, taken to a hospital in Moshi and left there.  Zach found a hotel which was very rudimentary to stay in, whilst he recovered.  After a couple of days the guide who had carried him down came Mount Kilimanjaro, came and found him and invited Zach to stay with his family until he was well enough to travel home.  

In 2015, again, with a bursary from the Catenians, Zachary volunteered to go to Cambodia and worked in construction work. He is still in contact with people he met there.  At the end of his period of volunteering, Fr Peter Stodart, the Parish Priest of Tunbridge Wells arranged for Zach to stay at the Tunbridge Wells Parish’s twin parish in Kompong Thom, Cambodia. The priests he met there were wonderful hosts and very knowledgeable tour guides.

On both trips, Zach met lovely people and had the most amazing experiences. If we had not heard about the Catenians Bursary Fund, he probably would not have undertaken either of these trips.

Zach was given funding from the main bursary fund and then the Tunbridge Wells Catenian Circle doubled his bursary which was really very generous of them.

Zachary said “the entire trip completely changed my outlook on life. I was able to meet amazing people and saw some amazing sights. I do believe that the volunteering project I was involved in is improving people's lives in Tanzania and helping them value education.”



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