In the spring of 1998, the City of Wichita had a Tanzania population of about five. This community had grown to more than 200 in 2000. The mutual need for an organization was agreed upon. In November 2001 an ad hoc committee was formed. This first committee started meeting at Wichita State University under the Chairperson Ms. Fatma Al-Tamim. Scheduling was a big problem, because most committee members had to juggle times between school and work. Members of this committee included Phillip Mogendi, Charles Bishota, Godfrey Chibulunje, Clement Mazaza, Joyce Mapunda, Neema Mambali, Doctor, Emillius Mwananche and David Markos. The constitution rough draft was drawn. For some unknown reason this constitution was never ratified, and the organization never took off.
In February, 2001 a fellow Tanzanians lost a parent. It was during this community gathering the idea to start this organization gained momentum. Another committee was formed and donations were made to raise the money to open the account for the organization to be. Appointed leaders were under the chairmanship of Wilson Chilewa. Other leader included Jackson Lyimo, Mwiga Kapya, Ali Kibanga, Avit Kwareh, Dennis Mbelwa and Sania Mohamed to name just a few. An account was opened the following day.
After this incident, word spread out that another organization was in the formation. That is when a consensus was reached that since the idea was the same; there was a need to re-evaluate the direction of this movement. Lunda Asmani in collaboration with Avit Kwareh called a meeting with an intention of reaching a consensus of which direction to take.
From this infamous meeting on a beautiful February afternoon, an interim committee was formed, which replaced the two committees which were formed earlier. This interim committee was given a task to review the proceeding of the earlier committees and eventually formulate the desired organization. Members of the committee were Lunda Asmani, Phillip Mogendi, Charles Bishota, Jimmy Alphonse, Dennis Mbelwa, Sania Mohamed, Fatma Al-Tamim, Anna Mambali, Emillius Mwanache, Mwiga Kapya, Ali Kibanga, Wilson Chilewa, Yahya Goronga, Baraka Msetti, and David Markos.
The interim committee selected its leaders. Lunda Asmani was selected to be Chairman, Baraka Msetti was Vice Chairman and Charles Bishota became its Secretary. During its meetings, an e-mail system was set up which played a role of linking prospective members. A website was designed and a constitution was drawn. The commitment and hard work shown by these young men and women was unheard off. The progress shown by this committee, assisted in making the movement gain momentum. Those who had doubts began believing in the outcome. Ten weeks later the constitution was ready and the interim committee had accomplished its task.
On April 27, 2002 a general assembly was called with an objective of ratifying the constitution, and elected the first officers of the Tanzania Association of Wichita. A third of Tanzanians showed up to this meeting, and the elections were held under supervision of electoral committee led by Baraka Msetti. The first officers were elected and assumed their position as soon as that General Assembly was over. TAWICHITA was in business, and it has never looked back!
The level of enthusiasm shown with this group is unsurpassed. We believe that we are growing towards where we want to be. Our efforts have been applauded with all kinds of people, and some have gone the distance to copy what we started. That earmarks our phrase "together we can make it happen" and right now we are on that track.