Thursday, November 12, 2009

Implementation Updates!

We are soooooo excited to report such significant progress to our donors and volunteers. Check us out........we have an incredible team!
  • All our local partners have signed extensive agreements with us and Rotary, to assure expectations are understood and designs specified by Engineers without Borders (EWB) are adhered to.
  • I am on my way there in a couple of weeks and will be followed by 2 EWB engineers, Tony Haske and Alan Kwan.
  • We are installing the millet grinding machine at the school in Zouera this week. - this will be used by the school cook to prepare the daily meal for the students, in a couple of hours, rather than an entire day! While it is not being used by the school, the local women will pay to grind their millet to prepare breads and other more products to take to market. They will now be able to make and sell a much higher volume of products in the same amount of time, and not incur the aches and pains of using the heavy pestle that has been the norm for centuries. The revenue that the school will generate from this machine will pay for the required parts and maintenance for the solar lighting and water tap stand! This machine is being sold, delivered by a local business man from neighboring Timbuktu. He will also provide the training and support. Sustainability at its best. Here's a photo of their machine, in the crate still:
  • The copy and print center is scheduled to go into the school at Farach on December 4th. A local non-profit, Geekcorps, is building, delivering, installing, training, and supporting this center. This center will draw locals from all around, and tourists and media that attend the annual festivals in the area. The funds generated will pay for the required parts and maintenance for the solar lighting and water tap stand! Without local access to a copy and print center, the local school directors must pay for transportation to go all the way to Goundam to type, print, and copy all their census paperwork and students diplomas etc. Now this money can stay in the community. I'll be there for the installation and training, can't wait! As some of you may know, the Farach School Director died tragically this year and this copy center was his brain child. So Rotary has produced a plaque to put on the desk at the center, in his memory. I know the community will be touched by this heartfelt gesture.
  • The solar lighting and water pipeline and hand washing station will be constructed in mid December while Tony and Alan , our volunteer Engineers are onsite. These are the most complicated aspects of the project, so wish us luck and pray for no unforseen issues. (LOL, in the Sahara desert, right!). the kids are waiting for us!
I will be posting photos here as I can throughout the month of December and expect a big update in January when I return. Think of us ... dirty... tired... sleeping on the ground...dreaming of a cold coca cola... when you are curled up in your jammies opening up your Christmas gifts! LOL

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