About Us

MESO is a voluntary, not-for-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) operating in the context of socio-economic and cultural development and environmental conservation in Tanzania. Our central objective is to promote development awareness, utilization and conservation of both natural and cultural resources.

The organization was founded in the mid-1980's, becoming formerly registered in January of 1995 under Tanzanian Civil Society Ordinance (Cap 337, Rule 5), Certificate of Registration No. SO.8318 of 1954, complying with NGO ACT 2002.

Our work is prioritized to facilitate and encourage participation of poor people in development matters by creating an enabling environment to control, own and benefit from environmental and cultural resources. This ethic is strongly adhered to in each of our programs, activities and publications.

Aims and Objectives


To coordinate and facilitate the flow of information to promote environmental awareness as a means towards sustainable development.


To coordinate and facilitate the flow of information to promote emancipation of disadvantaged peoples, such as those in pastoralist, farming and other rural communities, women, children and the unemployed.


To promote awareness of and preparation for environmental hazards, both natural and social, through all potential vessels.


To strike a balance between traditional and 21st century values.


To recruit people to engage in participatory programs through multi-faceted educational campaigns, seminars, workshops, the media, entertainment, etc.


To coordinate and facilitate joint efforts with international organizations, volunteers, students and educators who share a similar ethos.

MESO's Program

MESO operates under the mutual components of socio-economic development and environmental conservation. The socio-economic component addresses poverty alleviation by improving food security, health care access, sanitation and housing conditions, and by promoting micro-enterprise development and alternative income-generating activities. The environmental conservation component seeks to bring about attitudinal change among community members and leaders regarding the importance of natural resources and their sustainable utilization. Our program's strategy is therefore centered on the following set of principles:


To work closely and in solidarity with target communities.


To support activities pioneered by local residents.


To maximize opportunities for full participation of all community members in the planning and implementation processes of projects.


To conduct and publish research so as to reach a broader audience.


To cooperate with individuals, institutions and organizations with similar objectives and/or intentions.

Branches and Field Offices

MESO has been established to operate anywhere in Tanzania to meet the collective interests of its members and target communities. The organization has its head office in Arusha municipality, where it conducts social and environmental programs and solid waste management (Kaloleni ward). A liaison office is located in Dar es Salaam that deals with coordination activities, education for early childhood development and post-primary and secondary school leavers in Sinza, and studies in sustainable urban development and poverty alleviation. MESO also has an agricultural function office at Tabata, Ilala District. A rural-based branch in Karatu district (Kambi ya Simba village) works for community conservation, sustainable agro-pastoral land use, eco-tourism, education, microfinance, and dissemination of information through seminars, training and resource centers. Another rural-based branch in Mwanga District, Kilimanjaro region, is in its initial stages.

Values and Culture


Willingness and interest in shared aims and objectives


Spirit of volunteerism and pioneering work


Resourcefulness and active involvement


Teamwork while respecting the freedoms of individuals


Creativity and innovation


Honesty and integrity


Networking, expanding links and dialogue with partners and competitors


Using criticism and challenges as bases for further development


MESO is a local NGO, though rapidly expanding to a national and even international scale. The organization is financed primarily through its members and through the programs it has established (e.g., ecotourism, microfinance, solid waste disposal, etc.).

Although we are not opposed to receiving external support to accomplish our goals, we strongly believe that our programs and activities should be built on the principle of independence and be geared towards self-sustainability. We hope that, through co-operation with other concerned organizations and individuals, we can strike a balance of mutual support rather than dependence.

Our Staff

Petro Ahham - Director and President

In 1993 Mr. Ahham received his BS in Biology, Geography and Education from the University of Dar es Salaam. A year later, he founded the Multi-Environmental Society (MESO) and has served as the Director and President ever since. He regularly attends conferences related to tourism, poverty alleviation and sustainable development throughout Tanzania and Africa, and has participated in colloquiums organized by UNESCO, ACCORD/MNF, WTO and REPOA, among others. In addition, he serves as the coordinator for the Arusha NGOs Network (ANGONET). In July 2003 he was elected to Tanzania's NGO National Council (30 members) and in September 2003 he was appointed to the NGO National Board (10 members). With MESO, he has authored or co-authored more than ten papers and publications and, through these, pioneered conservation and tourism efforts in the Rift Valley area. He has also served as a supervisor for interns from the US, Germany, France and the UK. In his spare time, Mr. Ahham manages farms in the village of Kambi ya Simba, Karatu District, where he was born.

Juma H. Killaghai - Secretary General

Mr. Killaghai received his Bachelor of Education in 1991 and a Masters in Chemistry in 1995, both from the University of Dar es Salaam. Before then, he received a diploma in education (Physics and Mathematics) and a National Service Certificate from the Dar es Salaam Teachers College. He taught science for a brief period at the secondary level before serving as an evaluator of science manuscripts for the U. of Dar Press. He worked on the National Faculty of Education as a coordinator for the Girls' Science/Math Project from 1994-1995 and as an associate coordinator for science/math teacher training in 1996. In 1996 he also began working in the chemistry department at the U. of Dar as a part-time assistant and research fellow. Since 1998 he has been BP Tanzania's chief chemist. Mr. Killaghai joined MESO as the organization's Secretary General in 1994, initiating the organization's Early Childhood and Youth Education Project in Dar es Salaam. He remains active in other educational activities in the Dar area, as a member of FESTAC International, organizing arts workshops for street children.

A.S.M. O'Hhay-Sang'ka - Executive Advisor

Mr. Sang'ka graduated from the University of Dar es Salaam in 1976 with a law degree. After interning briefly for the Attorney General, he began working full time for the Tanzania Legal Corporation (TLC), heading the Department of Litigation. In 1981 he headed the TLC's Arusha branch and in 1986 he was admitted to the bar as an advocate. Since his tenure with the TLC, as a private advocate, he has handled numerous criminal, civil, corporate and land rights suits throughout Tanzania. Apart from his legal practices, Mr. Sang'ka is a small farmer and practices animal husbandry using zero-grazing methods. An ardent environmentalist, he has been a full member and advised MESO since the organization's inception.

Donald Tuway - Solid Waste Disposal Manager

From 1972-1994 Mr. Tuway served on the Arusha Town Council (now the Arusha Municipal Council). His duties included: carrying environmental sanitation inspections, controlling infectious diseases, health education, scrutinizing building plans and drainage testing, water and food sampling assessment, monitoring industrial health hazards, vector borne control (malaria) and other vermin, public health protection, solid and liquid waste supervision, and public health administration. Now he is MESO's Solid Waste Disposal Manager.

Albin Paulo - Microfinance Branch Manager
John Sadikieli - Assistant Manager (Microfinance)
Lazaro Xumay
- Loan Officer
Angela Marco
Malle - Loan Officer

Mr. Paulo, Mr. Sadikieli, Mr. Xumay and Mrs. Malle form the loan committee of MESO's microfinance program and manage client services on a daily basis. All are standard seven graduates and farmers in the village of Kambi ya Simba. Together, they also run and maintain a visitor and resource center (library) at the Karatu Branch. Mr. Paulo has long experience in management of community services and natural resources, administration of community development and conservation farming. In addition, Mr. Paulo served as councilor for Mbulumbulu Ward in the early 1980s and currently represents MESO as a member of the Karatu NGO Council.

Eutropia Hharrison - Office Manager and Resource Center Attendant

Ms. Hharrison finished standard seven in 1992 and received a vocational degree in sewing machine in 2001. She has obtained basic computer skills (Microsoft Office, typing) and practical skills in library management.

MESO - The Multi-Environmental Society

(C) Copyright 2004