Tuesday, 24 May 2011

School Visits

Patricia and I were supposed to have a meeting this morning about the posting of new teachers to schools. (Teachers don't choose where they teach here and can be moved, without any consultation, to a village school miles away!) The other colleagues were nowhere to be found so we re-planned the day.

Patricia is working on a project to restore 15 school libraries and train teachers to promote and organise them with the help of someone in each village community. Although these schools have relatively few books, they were given some in January by another NGO and the plan is that they will be used effectively. There is no reliable postal or email system here, which means if you want to get information to someone, you need to go to them. So we took the motos on a tour of 4 very rural schools.

Michael performed wonderfully on all terrains, including red dirt, sand, tarmac and a rather narrow bridge. I was very proud of him...... and me, as we covered about 100km in the day. As always our arrival brought children out from everywhere to stare at us. I'd love to know what they are thinking. Anyway, pupils & teachers were interviewed about their libraries and I got to talk to a couple of headteachers. It was interesting how, the welcome we received and  the interest of the staff closely matched the level of engagement & cheerfulness of the children we met. Within moments I knew with which schools I want to work and where any support will be welcomed.

At this school the pupils were waiting for lunch. They benefit from Ghana's "School Feeding Programme" funded by a range of providers. The cooks were working so hard in the cook house and produced a similar meal of rice and beans every day for hundreds of school age children.

By the time we had left the last school, it was time for our lunch too. Being fairly close to Wa we went into the town to find some decent vegetables in the market. Amazingly, we bought, green beans, a few carrots, white cabbage and green peppers all on the same stall. I took responsibility of strapping them onto Michael's pannier with rubber strips. Surprisingly, they are still edible having fallen off twice during the journey home. Once I noticed, and once I was flagged down by a guy waiting for the tro. He taught me how to use the strapping properly. Tales of the hopeless Nansala will be all round the Spot tonight!

It has been a lovely day. The icing on this cake was our encounter with this gorgeous goat. She was hanging around our front door and followed us into the area where we keep the bikes. I am sure she is looking for somewhere quiet to give birth to her kids. She must be carrying at least 2. I offered  her a few precious leaves of our cabbage  but she didn't seem keen. We have left the gate open so we will see what she does.
The animal activity has stepped up recently with the arrival of more frequent storms and rain. The pigs are muddier and stink and bullfrogs mate noisily outside my window through the night. I have to use the ceiling fan some nights, not for the breeze but to drown out the noise! There isn't a lot I can do about the pigs. They are clearly not using the soap I left out for them. (Thanks for sending that, Jeny!)


  1. so good to hear of your adventures!! and i love the photos - getting a sense of what it must be like...
    you always sound so positive - does it still feel like a holiday and a novelty?
    good on you! Janet

  2. i really love reading all your news..........wish we had the animals at school as well!!!

    hope the roof has stayed put!!

    regards Debbie c x