Name: Anthony Jones Mshigen
From: Morogoro, Tanzania but my family is from Kilimanjaro Region
Job: Trainer for both Mine Detection and Research rats at APOPO
Tell me more about your job
I’ve worked here for 9 years. I started as a TB trainer and a driver then I moved to be a data clerk at the main office alongside becoming a trainer. I heard about APOPO from my neighbour and they told me a lot about it and it sounded interesting so I wanted to work here.
These pouched rats used to annoy me when they would steal food at home. And now they are my friends. My best friends. I have really got to know them. They do incredible things. It’s amazing to know what they are capable of and I am able to learn from the research.
When you were little, what did you want to be when you grew up?
At first I was thinking that I might become a doctor.
What would be your alternative career?
I’d enjoy being an IT guy, as I studied a diploma in ICT.
What are your hobbies?
Playing basketball, swimming and cooking. I like watching movies, my favourite genres are action, comedy and animation. My favourites are Son of Big Foot, Moana, Despicable Me, Penguins of Madagascar, Lion King.
Who has been an inspirational person in your life?
My brother, he is an engineer working at pest management at SUA. My other brother is working at a college as an IT teacher.
“These pouched rats used to annoy me when they would steal food at home. And now they are my friends. My best friends. I have really got to know them. They do incredible things. It’s amazing to know what they are capable of and I am able to learn from the research.”
Do you have any pets?
I have a dog at my mother’s house but it really likes me. His name is Petty and he is beautiful.
What is your favourite animal?
Now it is rats and dogs.
What is your favourite food?
Ubwawa maharage – rice and beans cooked with coconut.
Where is your favourite place?
The Kilimanjaro region. It’s usually much cooler and greener than here.
What is your favourite colour?
What was your favourite subject at school?
What languages do you speak?
Swahili, English, Pare, Changes. I can understand some Spanish and I sing some Spanish songs by Ricky Iglesias and Antonio Banderas and understand the words.
What is an interesting fact about you?
I like being true and I really really hate lies, even about little things.
For the finale of this amazing journey to Africa, I joined a group and hiked up Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa, and the highest free-standing peak in the world. It’s a 5,895m (19,341ft) high dormant volcano that springs up into three cones – Kibo, Mawenzi and Shira. Uhuru Peak is the highest summit … Continue reading 20. Trekking to the roof of Africa
My two weeks at APOPO has flown by. Today is my last day and so I’m feeling a little sad but it really has been amazing and I think I’ve made the most of it. I started today in Lily’s office as usual but we had a coffee and actually finally got round to completing … Continue reading 19. Wrapping up my time with APOPO including a Full Cheek Friday Feast
I was tired this morning after waking up to another rainy day. I started off by documenting all of the rats in the breeding kennels (which spelled completion of my Head Office rat audit!) and then I finished up adding the information to the master spreadsheet. Then I interviewed Pendo, a wonderful character at APOPO. … Continue reading 18 APOPO training, welfare, research and data