Suffolk communities are exchanging ideas with Tanzanian counterparts to enhance livelihoods following a visit from the Bishop of Kagera.

The Diocese of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich has maintained ties with Kagera's diocese for more than three decades, facilitating mutual visits.

Earlier this year, a group from Suffolk paid a visit to Kagera, with Suffolk recently hosting the return delegation.

The group, led by the Rt Revd Darlington Bendankeha, Bishop of Kagera, and his wife Penina toured several locations - including a top-up shop in Felixstowe to learn about community initiatives benefiting people struggling with daily expenses.

Suffolk communities share transformative friendship with Tanzanian peers Suffolk communities share transformative friendship with Tanzanian peers (Image: Submitted)

The Kagera link coordinators in Suffolk, Chris and Anji Dawkins, said: ‘‘The link is rooted in friendship and underpinned by prayer.

“Visits both to and from Kagera cement those relationships and open all our eyes to a world beyond our everyday life.

"Experiencing each other’s environments helps us all put our own challenges into perspective."

They noted similarities and contrasts between the two dioceses, with the majority of Kagera's population relying on subsistence farming on hilly terrains, unlike Suffolk's flats.

Bishop Martin said: “They have been seeing what can be adapted and used in their context to improve lives in Kagera.

READ MORE: Beccles hospital celebrates 100 years with grand fete

“These visits are always mutual – we learn as much from their reflections on our life here as they do from the visits they make."

Bishop Darlington said: “For us in Kagera, this partnership has been a blessing between our two dioceses for over 30 years.

“On this trip to Suffolk we are learning many things about opportunities that the church and community here have to help all citizens within the county.

"This is a real mission of the church to reach all aspects of human life by encouraging people to work for the development of the entire community."