Monday, June 29, 2015

Girls' Soccer Competition



 As my last activity in village we held a a girls' soccer competition to distribute 11 soccer balls that we had received last year from the Rotary Club of Madison-South, Wisconsin. They were donated to do soccer based HIV/AIDS and malaria education activities (see previous posts about Grassroot Soccer) as well as to form a girls' soccer team. There hadn't been much movement on the soccer team front, so we decided to by pass the barrier of school logistics and having an available coach to just getting the soccer balls in the girls' hands. Girls competed in 4 events (4k, 100 meter dash, shoot out, juggling) winning points in each and the top 11 went home with their own brand new soccer ball! It was a great day with tons of excitement and just a fantastic way to end my time in village.

Runners coming in on the long course

Busting it out on the 100 meter dash

Taking a shot at the shoot out

YAY for all the contestants! 

Friday, June 19, 2015

Thank You Rotary of Northfield Minnesota for Our New Clinic Latrine!

Look at this beautiful latrine and hand washing station! 
I'd like to extend a HUGE thank you to the members of the Northfield, Minnesota Rotary Club for making this project possible. Truly, without their financial support this would not have been possible. 


Togo is one of the pilot countries for a Rotary International partnership and while it was a rocky start (what Peace Corps project doesn't have some bumps and troubles along the way?) all of us here in Zafi are just so proud and happy to have this new latrine at the clinic. 

The clinic serves a population of about 8,000 people and there's about 35 daily visitors in addition to weekly baby weighings and pre-natal care sessions which bring in anywhere from 25-45 new or expecting mothers.

Moms, me and babies at our hand washing training
More of the attendees with the hand washing station used in our demonstration on the left 
Fancy! no squatty potties here! 
Maggie showing off how to use the hand washing station
Thank You! Merci! Akpe Kaka! 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Elephants!

After visiting the Tamberma village Amelia and I headed a bit south, with poor directions and a good sense of adventure to visit a lodge that is working on elephant conservation. I got to take a little walk around where I saw some wildebeests and then in the evening the elephants came home! 

Look at that excitement and the elephant! 
 I was whispering as we saw the elephants coming closer which proved to be very unnecessary as we were about to get a LOT closer.

even closer.. 

...and closer
This one was trying to give me a little kiss. I was freaking out the entire time and Amelia kept talking me down from the hyperventilation and slight panic attack. 

It's been a while since some one has done my hair...
.... but I don't think this is usually how you do it. 
Elephant skin is so thick and strong! I don't know what I was expecting but it was a surprise! 
Arm wrestling competition
Amelia the elephant tamer with no fear. 
Quite an experience for sure!

If your travels bring you to Togo, call them up at  90.09.58.13 and the number for their excellent restaurant is 90.55.49.21

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Tamberma Village

After COS conference Amelia and I headed up north to visit the Tamberma village near Kante. The tamberma village is known for the two story traditional mud houses there. Made a UNESCO world heritage site in about 2008 they've done a great job with preservation and the sort. It was definitely my most touristy moment in Togo and felt pretty weird after feeling like a local for most of the last two years. 
They made me put on this ridiculous hat


The one of the two story castles

One of the castles preserved by UNESCO 

Amelia and Me

Showing how to get in and out of the sleep caves on the structures


Friday, June 5, 2015

Close of Service Conference

This week everyone from my stage who is still in Togo came down to Lome where Peace Corps put us up at a beach side hotel just outside of Lome. It was a great time to get information about applying for federal jobs, finishing up Peace Corps paperwork and post PC life. Most of all it was a time for us to celebrate our accomplishment of successful Peace Corps services! I'm so proud of every single person from my stage (including those med-seps who had to leave early!). I've been blown away with the incredible quality of people with whom I've spent two years.

The group- Peace Corps Togo 2013-2015 :)

English and Gender Education- the best sector :)