Friday, October 24, 2014

So Far So Good in LIFE

Word of the week: 'Tuma Jiam!' – meaning ‘well done’, a phrase we’ve come to learn this week as we see some more small successes in the project.
This week saw us meeting with three Disabled Persons’ Organisations across the Builsa District. The sessions in Chuchuliga, Sinensi and Wiaga allowed People with Disabilities to talk about their general problems and what support we could give. It also gave us an opportunity to hear their views firsthand on how they can get more involved in the Feok Festival this year. We’re working to improve transport links and provision of services for PWDs at this year’s festival, in co-operation with the Chief, the Planning Committee and the District Assembly.
On Tuesday we also met with Wiaga’s Mental Health Self-Help Group and discussed with them about getting them more involved in both the Feok Festival and the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on the 3rd December.
We met some of the Women’s Executive from the Sandema Girls’ Club who are doing an amazing job with zero funding – over the next few weeks we’ll hopefully be able to support them with resources and people power to assist them in empowering as many girls as possible.
Wednesday saw the team and Gilbert (head of Sandema’s Disabled People’s Organisation) meeting with the District Chief Executive for Builsa North, in which we lobbied for greater support for and representation of People with Disabilities on the Feok Planning Committee. Everyone is really positive that this year’s festival will be even better than last year’s, and we are working hard to ensure that the support that has been promised is followed through on.
On the New Era front we’ve found a reliable supplier of Shea Butter in Tamale – Rita - who trained the ladies earlier this year. We are hopeful that the women will be able to resume production next week.
Those were some of the highlights, but my favourite moment was when the Chuchuliga singing group sang to us and we all danced together. As you can see from the video below, the National Volunteers have much more rhythm than the UK Volunteers. We believe this singing group should be given the opportunity to perform during Feok, showcasing the skills and interests of People with Disabilities to the wider community, and we will be making every effort to ensure this happens.

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