Message from Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: “This year’s commemoration of Nelson Mandela International Day comes at a moment of deep reflection on the life and work of Madiba, as the universally revered leader remains in the hospital.”
The photo was taken in South Africa at a school where Peace Corps Volunteers and their counterparts had their permagarden training. People were encouraged to design plots in different shapes to get young people interested in gardening and to use as a teaching aid.
In this one in particular, a message about HIV/AIDS is communicated, that we need vegetables to feed HIV/AIDS infected and affected.
My husband, Ben, and I were Volunteers in the rural village of Mokuruanyane, South Africa from 2007-2009. I was a Community & HIV/AIDS Outreach Project Volunteer and Ben was an Education Volunteer.
My primary project was working with four women educators to develop Chrysalis Girls Club, an after-school girls empowerment program for the 75 7th grade girls in our village. In the 2008 school year, six weeks of our program were devoted to women’s reproductive health, sex education, and HIV/AIDS awareness & prevention. The girls designed an HIV/AIDS mural, and Ben worked with five male students from the secondary school to sketch the mural onto the wall of Abbotspoort Higher Primary School.
While I worked with the women educators to provide HIV/AIDS education, Ben supervised the girls in painting the mural. Ben took this photo in November 2008, at the end of our first successful year of Chrysalis Girls Club. The mural faces the main road that runs through Mokuruanyane.
Peace Corps Community Development Volunteer Susia Barr-Wilson
At my village’s middle school, I started a girl’s soccer team to get them active and show that they can play just like the boys. Family and friends from back home donated authentic balls and other equipment to outfit us.
Almost four months after its arrival, the Play Pump remains the most popular place to be. Not only children from the primary school, but parents and grandparents are often seen chatting at the spigot’s end exchanging gossip while collecting water. After school there is – quite literally – standing room only. Lines form for a chance to hop on and a take a spin. Any able-bodied person cannot walk past without a throng of learners demanding a push.
Peace Corps Volunteer Andrew Hubble recently installed a ‘Play Pump’ water filtration system, which will serve as a reliable source of fresh drinking water for his South African community.
Happy National Library Week! Here are some highlights from our Digital Library featuring library projects from Volunteers around the world. You can also help fund current projects through the Peace Corps Partnership program.
We received 29 computers from a donor in Australia for the computer lab at one of our primary schools. Woody got a few of them set up in time to have an “impromptu” opening of the new computer lab after school just to allow the kids to check out the computers.
Unfortunately due to a wiring mismatch with the electrical sockets, we only had enough working outlets to be able to get two computers running. But, after letting a few kids into the lab to try out the computers, we soon realized that they were very excited to use the computers. We let them play typing tutor games and demonstrated to them where to hold their fingers on the keyboard.
For some of them, it was their first time even touching a computer.
Traditional dancers performed for trainees in South Africa in January 2011. The dance involved women in traditional dress stomping, clapping and parading around a set of traditional drums that were providing the music for the dance.