January Project Roundup
January 8, 2016
Our nine VSLA groups, representing about 199 people, continue to thrive in Ghana. Peter has hired two more farmer advocates to ramp up our agriculture work in the area, and Joshua has been training them.
Collins continues to work in the demonstration plot and build personal relationships with area farmers. He is also working with Mr. Kofi, a farmer who has allowed us to mulch part of his crop for demonstration purposes.
Bauya, Sierra Leone
Sullay and Joe have been generating interest in VSLAs in and around Bauya and already have seven groups of people organized and ready to begin!
The goat ventures are progressing well. We have eight more goats to procure for the five new businesses, and expect to have them before the end of January.
Lunsar, Sierra Leone
Abraham Mansaray (“Shanty”) is our “boots on the ground” in Lunsar, where we are launching a new initiative focused on agriculture and VSLA. Under the guidance of Foday Koroma, a church pastor and trusted partner in the area, Shanty has been meeting with church and community leaders, holding conversations on VSLA and farming. Response so far has been enthusiastic, and several VSLA groups are ready to form. There also is high interest in the agriculture training that we will provide when we travel to Lunsar in early spring.
The fence for the new crop demonstration site is complete, and the field is ready for planting. Jesse reports recent success selling moringa, so it’s possible that the agriculture work in Togo will include more moringa in the coming months.
Everything is now in place for a March 1 launch of the survival skills classes, including teachers, locations, students and curriculum. A recent leadership team visit confirmed that a solid team is in place there with Carolina at the helm, and we are grateful for her passion for these children and their futures! We eagerly await the start of classes with girls from both Asilo Malambo and Hogar San Vicente orphanage schools.
We are still seeking a teacher for one of the English classes, and we pray that God will send us someone with both the skills and fervor for this work.
The first container of shoes arrived in port, and Just Hope team members are there now to help unload the shoes now that the container has been released. Raul and the boys he is mentoring will also assist in unloading the container and getting the shoes into the hands of the small teams who will purchase at wholesale prices and sell in rural, retail markets around Progreso.
Thirteen people are currently working on the dwarf banana project in Monterrey. Soil preparation is complete, and the crew is currently installing irrigation lines, which is labor-intensive work. Planting will occur in the next few weeks.