Natasha Franks interviews Marett Peets, president of the St Andrews branch of Anza, about the charity’s history and upcoming plans. 

Anza is a nonprofit that seeks to aid local businesses in the Kilimanjaro region of Tanzania. This summer, volunteers from St Andrews will be travelling to Morocco for the benefit of the charity. Their prime initiative for this year will be raising money to fund this trip.

Tribe: At the risk of sounding patronising, what does “Anza” mean? And how does that reflect on the charity’s goals and core vision? 

Marett Peets: Anza is Swahili for ‘to start’ or ‘begin’, so I think this fits well with our entrepreneurial spirit. Our motto, or tag-line, is ‘Starting and Scaling Social Businesses.’ Anza as an NGO raises funds to help entrepreneurs reach their vision of building a sustainable business that will benefit the community in Tanzania’s Kilimanjaro region.


T: Anza’s St Andrews chapter opened fairly recently. What was the process behind that, and how did you personally become involved? 

MP: Yes, this is Anza’s 2nd year in St Andrews. We are very excited to be affiliating with the Union this year. I personally got involved through responding to Amy’s (last year’s president) email at the start of last year. She was looking for a committee to help her start up the St Andrews branch and I thought I would give it a go!

T: Members of Anza can often be found selling baked goods in front of the Vic to raise money for the charity. How will this summer’s trip to Morocco benefit the charity itself? 

MP: 69% of the funds from the Venture go directly to Anza. This is absolutely amazing as the majority of Anza’s funding comes from student societies like ours. These funds eventually go to help accomplish projects such as building toilet blocks to prevent school closures, and providing support for entrepreneurs involved in recycling projects and women health.


T:  What can students do to get involved in Anza? 

MP: We are having a Fall Festival on October 30th, just in time for Halloween. We are also having an open committee meeting on November 4th. We are hoping to get a lot of feedback from our members to see how they would like to get involved to help the charity.

 T: Do you have any upcoming events you’d like to give us a preview of? This includes the mountain climb – what can the lucky volunteers expect from the Venture? 

MP: The Moroccan Venture is 10 days: 2 half days of travel, 2 days in Marrakesh, and 7 days trekking in the High Atlas Mountains and eventually summiting Mount Toubkal, the highest mountain in North East Africa. I am participating in the venture as well, so I’m particularly excited. We are still accepting sign ups until mid-November.

We are having a Fall Festival this Friday, the 30th. So please check out the event on Facebook. It should be good fun with pumpkin painting, hot cider, and other fun fall themed activities.


Natasha Franks


Photos courtesy of Anza’s Facebook page.