Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Fun/Interesting things that have happened since I've been at site

I like lists perhaps you've noticed.

-I got a kitten, she's super cute-white with brown spots. I've named her Freida.
-I took a machete to shoulder-high grass to make way for my garden for which I have bought carrot, cabbage, tomato, pepper, and onion seeds. I also have zuccinni and basil seeds that my mom sent from America.
-I got punk'd Ghanaian style. I allowed a Muslem women in my village to dye my left hand with henna because I thought that it would be a fun cultural exchange only to find out after the fact that it means that I'm looking for a husband. The henna lasted for a week and a half and my fingernails are stilled tinged orange.
-I had a man come and paint flowers and the words Peace and Love on the screen doors of my bedroom and kitchen, respectively.
-I have grown to like fufu, but yam only please, no casava or plantain. I also learned how to make groundnut soup. If I see you when I come back to the states I will make it for you. It's pretty good.
-I am super tan.
-I got a short-wave radio and the BBC world news has improved my life drastically. I can also get signals from Air Europe, France, Spain, and the Netherlands with programs all in English, through which I have randomly heard Ottis Redding songs, a dramatization of the Lehman Brothers' collaspse, and have been appraised of Christ's second comming-May 21st, 2011. Mark your callenders.

What am I doing here?

So perhaps you're wondering what the heck I'm doing in Ghana aside from reading like a fiend and developing a fierce tan. My job title is Health/Water Sanitation Volunteer and my job description is slightly less vague. I am to educate about HIV/AIDS, Malaria, breast feeding and child nutrition, and to improve the general health of Abunyanya. And as I have mentioned I can also have side projects like reading clubs, women's groups, community gardens, ect. The possibilities of ways that I can complete my mission are endless and becasue I have an endless number of hours in a week I plan on having a lot of projects throughout the course of my service.

The projects that I have rolling around in my head for the upcoming months are as follows:

-I have a girl's group of Juniour High girls which I would like to teach reproductive health, family planning (condems!), job skills, female empowerment, HIV/AIDS ect.

-I have a women's group that I would like teach about breast feeding/child nutrition, family planning (many women have like 9 babies, I'm not kidding, which they sadly can't fully provide for), income generating skills, HIV/AIDS, malaria ect.

-I help the clinics of Kpassa and Azua (6 and 4 miles away from me, respectively) with baby weighing which I would like to lead sessions on breast feeding/child nutrition-including cooking demonstrations using, amoung other things, Moringa powder (look it up!)-family planning, HIV/AIDS, malaria, ect.

- Building and fixing spoiled latrines. This is needed sooooo badly, most people don't have a proper place to go to the bathroom.

-Teaching reading skills at my friend's kindergarten and one day a week to the primary students at my house.

-Teaching health at the upper primary and juniour high levels