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WEEK 1 News From Togo Front 11.29.10-12.5.10

Enyo: Unfortunately, but not surprisingly, nothing has changed here in Togo. The majority of the people are still living below the poverty level and it shows very visibly in the mannerisms and behavior of the people.  Now, of course, the children are still pretty happy despite their circumstance.  Most of the younger generation is pretty degenerate and miserable, and the elders look as if they have lost hope.  Walking in the streets is a bit sad because the general mood of the people is very, very somber.  Nevertheless, I remind myself that I did not come here to pity or wallow in sadness about the state of the people.

Actions completed to date:

1. Established communication,  restored my cell, and got my visa.

2. Secured a vehicle for transportation.

3. Traveled to Atakpame, to Madjamakou and Koussougba.

4. Met with Mr. Ohonou and the Chief and Chief’s council of Koussougba, and the School Director in Madjamakou.

5. Delivered the Education Project Letter.  The teachers were very happy and they will all write a response to Francoise!!! She should be getting 4-5 letters soon!

6. Met with Mr. Ohonou to plan the logistics of the workshop. We discussed the workshop timeline and program outline, lodging for 6 trainees and one workshop trainer including myself.  Discussed: cost of food, transportation for the different parts of the workshop, because two days of the workshops will be conducted in their respective villages, and Celebration and Certification and Graduation Day (Saturday).

7. Came back to Togo and worked on Voss Foundation Grant.

8. Met with WASH Trainer and secured her for the training.

A very exciting discovery that I am simply elated to share is that the villagers have found a solution for repairing their own water pump that they innovated right there in their own villages!  Most unbelievable!  The innovation and their improvements to the water system design has saved them 5 reparations this year alone! I am so proud of their innovation!

Our project is unfolding very well.

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