About a week after I had moved into the host home (together with the other Team Leaders: Donia, Aubrey and Eddie) we moved to a place called Peace Cottages. This venue offers rooms for our big team and has a lovely thatched conference space which we used to subsequently be introduced to the In-Country Volunteers, train them for a few days, welcome the UK Volunteers, introduce all of them to their room-mates, colleagues and businesses, and do lots of team building activities. It is here where we will all get to know each other and where we can acclimatise to the new environment together. Our host, which was called mama or aunty by some and sister by others, was a wonderful cheerful local lady, who was very helpful throughout the week. I shall miss her cheerfulness…
Donia and I shared a room. The cold shower at our host home suddenly became a luxury when we found out that Peace Cottages only had a drip shower. We would fill up a bucket and splash that on our heads. Apart from that, there was no air movement, so we used to call the room a ‘sweat box’ and developed several methods for cooling down, including wet old T-shirts on our heads, lying on the bed with our legs up onto the wall, and looking at pictures of frost in England.
During our training we managed to write up a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis for them, so that they can improve their business. This was a great analytical tool practice for the volunteers, to apply to the businesses they will be working at.
Meet the 14 In-Country Volunteers!! They are all so friendly, funny, have interesting backgrounds, and I just really feel like they will form a great team for this project.
Training has started!
Here is a little taste of what we watched during my session on International Development: