All 20 of our Summer 2019 Field Representatives safely arrived in Tamale this week! In just a few short days, they’ve had a crash course in the global water crisis and water-related diseases, as well as the Saha model for intervention.
The teams joined Rhiana and Simply in the field with their first visits to current Saha villages of Dalibila and Laligu. They were able to see working centers, meet some of our women entrepreneurs. Mma Ayishetu in Dalibila gave some great advice: “be patient with the women you are working with, and teach them very well how to run the business, and they will be very patient with you and accept you.”
In the afternoon, the teams learned how to use alum, a common coagulation-flocculation product, to remove particles from the water. Then they learned how Saha monitors our current communities, and practiced having curious conversations with their translators.
Today, the teams were on their own for the first time in current Saha communities of Zowu, Mile 40, Libi, Nangbagu, and Tibugu, practicing monitoring, speaking with current entrepreneurs for advice, and learning more about how the Saha model works. Tomorrow it’s off to their new communities for the first time! Good luck!
The countdown until the start of the 2011 Summer Fellowship Program is officially in single digits! The Fellowship Leaders arrive in Tamale on Sunday and the Fellows are just a few days behind them. We can’t wait!
This week I finished up my visits to all of the CWS villages,tagging along with Shak and Peter as they checked-up on Nyamaliga, Chongashe and Gbong.
This week I also met with Unicef and a representative from the Central Gonja District Assembly who updated me on our Unicef-CWS villages, Kampong, Alipe, Mile 40, Gilanzegu, and Nyanguripe. One of Unicef’s goals in partnering with us and the Central Gonja District was to “build the capacity of the local government”. One way that we have tried to do this was to pass on the monitoring of these water businesses to the District Assembly. Handing over this responsibility to the government has been challenging for CWS because we are very invested in our communities and like to know that the water businesses are succeeding. We have learned a lot over the past three years about how to successfully monitor our businesses and are used to being the ones in control! Despite these challenges, we recognize the importance of engaging the local government and are glad that Unicef has been able to facilitate this partnership. The District reported that for the most part, these 5 villages are doing well. The few problems that they are experiencing are all things that CWS has dealt with before and we hope to help the District solve them over the next few months. A big thanks to Gerry and Judy O’Connell, the Medfield Fit Girls, The Nolan’s, The Reids, and CWS Facebook Causes Team for sponsoring these villages – I’ll hopefully have some new pictures from them shortly!