Cheka School

Cheka School is a free English and Swahili pre-primary school for the children of the rural Kiranyi area of Arusha, Tanzania.


As a small charity, Cheka’s main priority is to reduce the impact of poverty in the area by providing free Swahili and English pre-primary education and offering business and educational opportunities to the community.

Cheka History

In 2010, students ventured to a local living room of Cheka House, nestled in the rural Kiranyi region of Tanzania.  Arjen Rijpkema & Gethy Nawijn (Dutch Volunteers) had a vision to assist the children in receiving a pre-primary education their families could not otherwise afford. Cheka Foundation was born and its first project, Cheka School soon followed.

Cheka School expanded and relocated in late 2010.  Over 40 students were cramped into a small classroom with no running water or electricity.  Half the students sat on the floor for their daily lesson.  In January 2011, Cheka volunteers got to work fixing up the decrepit classroom by purchasing desks, a chalkboard and other supplies. Students and teachers endured the space for several months while a new classroom was under construction.  In the spring of 2011 Jeff and Debbie Heritage and volunteers completed a new classroom.                                                                           

Cheka Currently

Students were delighted to have two functioning classrooms with desks, chalkboards and a library.  Shortly after, volunteers hired and trained a second full-time teacher, Happy Rafael.  In 2012, Cheka School moved to its current location, at a large and secure location in the area.  The new location hosts two large classrooms, a playroom, kitchen, dinning room, teaching office, outdoor playground and volunteer house.  Students feel safe to learn and play with full-time security. 

Click below to learn more about our managers and staff!