“It was an act of compassion that drove us there. We saw the condition the kids with albinism were in. My immediate response was, we have to do something.”

-- Peter Ash, Founder & CEO

The first 5 years of Under The Same Sun
History

UTSS began as a meeting of the heart, mind and vision of Peter Ash and Vicky Ntetema. Vicky was a journalist and Tanzania's BBC bureau chief, and Peter a former pastor and Canadian businessman with albinism, whose professional life was in transition. It was Vicky's report in July of 2008 that broke the story to the world of the gruesome and fatal attacks on persons with albinism in Tanzania.

Shortly after her report, Peter got in touch with Vicky. They quickly realized their shared calling to battle the deadly discrimination faced by people with albinism and to help empower those living with albinism in Tanzania and beyond.

UTSS, a Canadian registered charity, was born later in 2008 by founder and CEO Peter Ash. In 2009 UTSS registered as a U.S. 501 (c)(3) charity and as a Tanzanian non-government organization (NGO) opening its field office in Dar es Salaam headed by Vicky Ntetema until her retirement in May of 2018. The Important work of UTSS in Tanzania continues under the capable leadership of our acting Executive Director, Ester Rwela. Ester has been with us serving in a variety of capacities, and most recently as part of the management team in the role of Program Manager.

Today, in its Canadian headquarters, there are 1 full-time and 7 part-time staff, including 3 who have albinism. UTSS Tanzania has 20 staff and interns, all Tanzanian, and more than half have albinism.

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United Nations and Under The Same Sun

UTSS has played a leading role at the United Nations and the African Union in helping to form and pass resolutions and reports on the prevention of attacks and the discrimination against persons with albinism around the world.

2013

United Nations and African Union Human Rights Councils pass historic resolutions on Persons with Albinism recognizing the discrimination and condemning the atrocities they face in many countries.

2014

UN marks June 13, 2015 as the first International Albinism Awareness Day.

2015

UN appoints first ever independent expert to bring focus on the issue of violence and discrimination facing people with albinism around the world.

UTSS Latest News

May 04th, 2018
The Times
The president of Malawi has called for a debate on introducing the death penalty for “albino hunters” after the most recent case of a victim being killed for his body parts.
February 20th, 2018
Ikponwosa Ero named one of the 100 most influential Africans of 2017.
Ikponwosa Ero, UTSS staff member and UN Independent Expert on the Enjoyment of Human Rights by Persons with Albinism, has been named one of the 100 most influential Africans of 2017.
February 20th, 2018
Tanzanian children with albinism receive prosthetic limbs and a new lease on life.
ABC News reports on the journey of four children with albinism from Tanzania who recently travelled to the US to receive life changing prosthetic limbs.
November 28th, 2017
Zuwena's Children Face Unspeakable Danger
Learn how Understanding Albinism Seminars helped Zuwena's family.
November 16th, 2017
The Perils of Pale
Read National Geographic Magazine's in-depth coverage on the issues facing people with albinism in Tanzania.
October 30th, 2017
How your giving helps
Find out some of the ways your gifts make a difference.
October 26th, 2017
A quick update from UTSS
Read about three important events that we think will interest you.
October 26th, 2017
UTSS call for Tanzanian government to enact laws to provide strong punishment on attackers
Under the Same Sun country representative Vicky Ntetema said attacks on albinos were persisting due to lenient punishment against perpetrators.
October 26th, 2017
Unknown thugs chop off left hand of 75-year-old man with albinism
Mr. Nassor Mohammed, a 75 year old grandpa was attacked by unidentified thugs on Monday October 2, 2017.
October 26th, 2017
Tanzanian police arrest two for kidnapping child with albinism.
Tanzanian police have arrested a Tanzanian citizen and a Kenyan national for abducting a five-year old child with albinism in northern Tanzania’s district of Mwanga.