Saturday, January 24, 2015

My second trip was to an entirely different landscape.  The small mountains Level out to a wind blown plateau peopled with some small villages, many wandering nomads and the village of Acta.  This is an Afar village with a small school and a clinic across from the makeshift homes.  They rely on the water truck each week to fill the barrels and a cistern.  There was another cistern that caught the running water and was a 4 month reservoir shared by the village and the nomads.  Not sure what it will take to repair but seems worthwhile.  All over this landscape are concrete cisterns regularly serviced by these water trucks.  You see nomads and their tents all along the highway.  They have their livestock wandering around seeking vegetation to eat.  One clever man put his goats up in a small tree to eat the leaves.  Nobody bothers anyone else's animals whether in the city or the rural countryside.  I visited with the school master and one of his teachers.  They teach French and Arabic and most teachers are working with 2 grades at one time.   One getting a lesson the other working on an assignment.  He finds out who is not doing well from the tests then they help them.  On my Facebook page I put photos from the school.  They need more food as the food program is always short.  They have few real school supplies and simple things like more plates, small chairs and tables for their lunches would be huge.  Their big need is two more small classroom buildings. This will enable the government to supply 2 more teachers.  They have 2 different groups of children taught each day, one in the morning and the second in the afternoon.
Maybe tomorrow we will meet with the Minister of Education to learn more.  Finally how we can make a huge initial difference is by supplying them with sweaters.  It is cold here in the evenings being at higher altitude and little shelter.  My friend Mohamad said we should try to get a few extra large sweaters and give them to the Nomads we see. I hope this keeps you entertained and informed.   I told Suzanne what a perspective on our lives and puts our everyday challenges in a different light.   

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