Diakonia - People change the world

Tanzania: Happiness leads her community

Happiness Inja in Ukerewe, Tanzania proves that when you empower a woman, you empower the entire community. She shares her inspiring story of the first woman to vie and win the counselor seat.


An interfaith partnership for development

Uerewe is an island in Lake Victoria three hours ferry ride away from the mainland. Diakonia and its Lake Victoria Rights programme has beeen working on the island since 2006. Diakonia has an interfaith partnership with the Christian organization ELCT/ELVD and the Muslim organization Bakwata.

Trainings empowered her

Happiness Inja in Ukerewe joined the LVRP in 2006 and had some basic paralegal training. In 2009 she deepened her knowledge in a new training which was held in Arusha. The training was about accountability, women rights and land rights and also had a special focus on the right of women to own land and property. 

The training in Arusha was inspirational and when Hapiness came back home, she decided to take on a challenge and run for the position as counselor. She wanted to fight for women's rights at a new level, and she has succeeded and is now an inspiration to others.

Local law against child labour

She has managed to secure a building for the Llangala ward office which makes the work easier. Now the public knows where to find the staff. She has also seen to that there were enough resources to build two laboratory buildings for the secondary school, so that the students can do their science practicals. 

As a way of making life for children better, Happiness mobilized the other paralegals to create a local law against child labour. Another great improvement for the community will be when the new health center is built. The local government has allocated the necessary funds, after demands from community members.

Another improvement for the community is a new market with a good infrastructure - this will be a good place for people to improve their business.