Thursday, November 24, 2011

finally feeling somewhat accomplished...

the month of november was not only busy because of holidays or surgeries and translating. my garden project was also in full swing and i was aiming to finish everything within the month. this particular village was  extremely awesome in that they were completely motivated and hardworking and on board with all aspects of the project. everything ran smoothly and rather seamlessly. which never happens in senegal. so i got really lucky. 

this village really isnt my village. it's about 3k (1-2 miles) away from mine though, so really close. they heard of other peace corps volunteers bringing gardens and one day last may, when they saw me biking by their village, they stopped me and said "hey, come look at our garden space". it was really a dilapidated garden space. the fence was pretty much non-existent because there were goats and sheep getting inside. it needed work. 

so i wrote a grant sometime last june. and after months of peace corps bureaucracy, the grant finally came through in october. and we began work in november. before tabaski actually.  

first we had to acquire all the materials from our road town. this included bags of cement, the chain link fence, fence posts, wiring, hoses, watering cans, etc.

the fence posts had to be cut. holes needed to be made for the wiring. and the corner posts needed 90 degree reinforcement melding.

we then needed to transport all this material 20 miles. cement and metal. things are heavy.

first, we began with construction of a water basin. it's a relatively large garden space, some 45 meters squared for 20 women. one water faucet is not sufficient to water this garden so we needed a water container where multiple women can access ready water simultaneously. a 4 meters cubed water basin is sufficient.

the cement brick making process for the water basin...

then i went away for 2 days for a regional meeting. when i came back, it was pretty much done. GOOD JOB GUYS!!

then i had to go away again for the cleft lip surgeries. but when i came back, they already put the fence posts in the ground.

with cement too!!!

functioning water basin = check!

finally, 2 days ago, we assembled the chain link fence. many of the village came out to help.

other women were cleaning their future garden space and getting rid of the weeds.

more photos of the fence construction. 180 meters of fencing is a lot of fencing to put up.

the corners looked so good!

and the very last of the fence. all that remains is a door and then the garden will be fully functional. thinking about purchasing some seeds for them...

i didnt have to do anything. they did everything. and that's what makes these kinds of projects pseudo sustainable. yes i did bring 75% of the financing but they also had to contribute monetarily as well as labor-wise. i just sat around and watched, directed, supervised. the men wanted to show me their hands when they were done. blistery. cracked. working-man hands. 

they did a good job.

No comments:

Post a Comment