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Maggie1_smallMaggie Mazoleka
I founded SASHITA in 2008 with support from my family and friends, who believed in my idea of empowering communities in rural district of Tanzania, where I was born. I am a mother of one, married and an entrepreneur! 
I speak Sukuma as my first language, Swahili as my second and English my third language! I was born in Tanzania, from a huge and strong tribe in Shinyanga called the Sukuma. The wealth of a Sukuma family in Shinyanga, is having lots of cows! Normally, when a girl gets married an exchange of cows as a ‘dowry’ is paid to her family.
I was born into a large family of 8 (5 girls and 3 boys). Traditionally, a family of 5 girls in Shinyanga means the family is very wealthy.  Girls bring lots of cows, and with boys in the family it means cows are taken away to the other ‘girl’s’ family. 
Luckily, my father worked hard and sold his cows in order for us all to have an education, where others prefer to keep cows rather than give their girls an education!  
I came to live in Edinburgh, Scotland as a young girl in 1992. Ever since I have studied and worked in Edinburgh. In setting up SASHITA I felt it appropriate to make a difference to those not as fortunate as myself.

Pamoja/Together - we can make a difference!

Christine FinlaysonEileen_small


I am a self employed tutor doing freelance work at Pembertons Sewing and Craft centre in Stirling. I teach general dressmaking, pattern drafting and embroidery.

In 2003 I attended Jewel & Esk Valley College completing a short course in Historical Heirlooms for which I was awarded a Highly Commended Certificate. Wanting to further my embroidery, I embarked on City & Guilds Course in Creative Embroidery at Edinburgh’s Telford College, which I completed in 2010. I am promoting my work through exhibitions with fellow students. 

I became involved with SASHITA through my son Grant and his wife Maggie Mazoleka and visited Samuye at the time of Grant and Maggie’s wedding. I therefore, have seen first hand how difficult life there can be. I am committed to helping the people of Samuye as much as I can. 

Over the past few years I have run craft work shops, teaching the trustees/volunteers sewing and jewellery making skills and together we make craft items to sell at craft fairs. During 2014, I was fundamental in teaching the ”Stitch in Time” sewing classes, helping local women in Oxgangs learn sewing skills. In turn, many of the students have continued to make sellable items for us to raise further funds for Sashita.
Francoise_smallGrant Finlayson
I was born in Edinburgh and grew up in Penicuik where I attended Beeslack High School. I am currently employed with Burness Paull LLP one of Scotland's largest law firms where I work as an IT Regional Support Analyst.
I met Maggie Mazoleka (founder of SASHITA) in 2000 at Napier University where we studied Computer Networks and Distributed Systems together. We got married in Tanzania in 2010. We have a young son called Robert who was born in Jan 2011.
My main hobbies and interests are football, skiing, surfing, hiking and mountain biking. I am a season ticket holder at Tynecastle and follow Hearts as much as is possible, I also watch football on TV religiously. I try and get to surf as often as possible but it is weather dependant and not always possible. As part of a group I walked the West Highland Way this year for SASHITA and climb mountains on a fairly regular basis. I also try and get out on my bike as often as possible and cycle to work at least 5 times per week and get up the Pentland Hills as much as I can.
I have an interest in Africa through my relationship with Maggie and have visited Tanzania a number of times. I was lucky enough to visit Samuye last year and have firsthand experience of the hardships the villagers experience on a day to day basis be it collecting drinking water to the lack of good sanitary conditions.
Martha_smallMartha Masanja
As a young entrepreneur, I have a deep passion for business, strategy and management. I am a warm young lady with a friendly and full of life attitude. My great sense of humour only adds to the fact that I am both focused and motivated. I love reading, shopping (which unfortunately, I never quite have enough money for), being around my family and friends, planning and organising (I am not quite sure whether this is a hobby) and everything that involves music.
I come from Dar es Salaam, the industrial capital of Tanzania and I have many relatives in Samuye including my grandparents, who are Maggie's parents. Although I have been to Samuye on numerous occasions, it is after my engagement with SASHITA that made me see the village in a completely different perspective. I had never realised how easy it could be to change someone's life and make a difference. Being a part of SASHITA has given me a deeper understanding of my responsibility and capability to 
bring, both economic and social, development in deprived areas.
As a trustee, I have a profound passion for youth based activities and have a dream of interconnecting the youth/young people in Edinburgh with those in Samuye. I believe there is a tremendous amount that they can learn from each other and even further develop the young minds to align themselves with sustainable development to help eradicate poverty in developing nations. 
I invite everyone and anyone who will be interested, to come and join us and make a difference, one life at a time...
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“we believe all children have a right to an education” 
 “ we believe everyone should have access to clean safe drinking water”

“we believe everyone has a right to some help to escape poverty”

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