Friday, December 23, 2011

Images from this past month at site...

One of the men in my host family standing by some recently harvested millet- the main staple of the Malian diet.

After the millet is harvested, the men "gosi" or hit the millet to release the grain from its shell and then the women have to sift it.

A little extra height...

Since I am not a skilled Malian farmer, I am appointed babysitter. These are two of my little boys, both around 1 yr: Jangoba and Hamadi

One afternoon, I conducted an art class with my second graders. They were so excited when I gave each of them a piece of colored construction paper and a selection of crayons to use. They were even more floored when I told them they could take it home!

My class with their masterpieces. (A special thanks to Judy Cooley for sending the supplies)

I started painting a world map in one of the classrooms as part of my attempt to "beautify" the school. I'm hoping that these murals will motivate and entice the kids to stay in school- something I hope they can be proud of.

During my in-service training, we were introduced to a miracle tree that can help combat malnutrition. The Moringa tree is already well known and used throughout Africa but has not caught on in Mali as of yet. Four months after planting, the leaves are ready to be harvested, dried in the shade, and then pounded into a powder to be added on top of your meal. 100 grams of the powder has 7 times the Vitamin C of oranges, 4 times the Vitamin A of carrots, 4 times the Calcium of milk, 3 times the Potassium of bananas, and approximately the same amount of protein as one egg. Since the harvest has been poor this year due to the dismal amount of rain we received, it is especially important that the villagers atleast receive these important nutrients during hunger season. Here, my homologue and some of the villagers are standing with some of the pepinieres that will be transplanted once they have sprouted.

Some of the little girls next door had a blast playing with my dirty soapy water after I was done doing my laundry. When you don't have a lot to play with, anything can be fun!

The chekoroba (literal translation: old man) next door, who is too old to go out to the fields to farm, spends the day weaving baskets out of bamboo.

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