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Recent Blog Posts from Senegal

Essential Items for your stay in Senegal   (published in Senegal)

August 17, 2015 by   Comments(4)

Does not include the obvious like suncream (P20) First Aid kit, rehydration sachets etc.

Mosquito net – even if you’re told there are few mosquitos, it’s essential to stop flies and cockroaches landiing on you and disturbing your sleep! Also if you share a room it gives you a sense of your own space. Caribeners – Clip everything you can to your bag or yourself, then you can wander the market safe in the knowledge that they can try & pickpocket you but wont get very far!

Water filter – For when the water is a bit suspect. We get bottled water delivered to our house each week, but if in doubt “Tap Safe” will filter 1000l with each replaceable filter & is no bigger that a standard water bottle

Blue Tac / screw hooks / mini bulldog clips – Takes up no space & allows you to personalise your room & hang, clip & tie your para cord / photos & French verb reminders!! J

Para Cord – I have used aver 20m erecting both my & my housemates mosquito nets. I have also fashioned a clothes line for my towel & sweaty clothes to dry L

Leatherman / Swiss Army knife – Essential for cutting said paracord / apples etc.! Spork – A must for those biscuit / nutella snacking oppurtunities & saves you getting chocolate spread in your Leatherman!

Dry bag – great for it’s intended purpose & also to keep those cockroaches off your stash of biscuits!!

Baby Wipes – Instant shower when the water runs out!

Cooling water spray - A luxury but if you can fit it in your bag you’ll thank me when the electricity goes off & you are trying to sleep without your fan!!

Cover for your toothbrush – Keep those pesky cockroaches off your toothbrush

Marker pen – Useful for ...

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Essential Items for your stay in Senegal
Essential Items for your stay in Senegal

2 weeks before take off   (published in Senegal)

August 12, 2015 by   Comments(2)

So its now only 2 weeks until I set off on my adventure to Senegal. Im currently working in Edinburgh, a beautiful City, vibrant and busstling with people from all over globe here to experience the famous Edinburgh Fringe Festival. I wonder if there is any Senegalese Theatre being performed here at the festival? Preparations for my first trip to Africa are under way. I have been researching Senegalese culture & history & have been preparing my kit. Immunisations are all sorted and my accomadation info has arrived. I'm really looking forward to throwing myself into the projet and helping in what ever way i can.

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2 weeks before take off
2 weeks before take off

We have started spending your donations! THANK YOU AGAIN xxx   (published in Senegal)

August 9, 2015 by   Comments(0)

Myself, the other volunteers, Oumar & Amina had a brainstorming session about how to spend your lovely donations & to choose the list of priorities. Apologies for the formatting - it's a nightmare copying and pasting on this iPhone 4! Also since the meeting we have discovered that the centre will probably move to bigger premises so it is not worth doing any structural work to the building. Thanks again my friends - having this opportunity to spend your hard earned money is something I'll never forget! xxx 

Current Amount received 1,250,000CFA Update 750,000 Remains (Fans, Medicine & clothes DONE)

Extra Amount still to transfer from the UK 200,000CFA Proposed Fridge Budget 200,000CFA – lockable? Small fridge is most efficient (150kw) 150,000 & least plastic breakable parts, Large cheap fridge (292kw) is 260,000 & Large expensive (250kw) is 350,000CFA. All prices to be negotiated with a Wolof speaker! J


Is the centre moving location? If so everything needs to be moveable & not hard wired.

How can the items be looked after & stored? Perhaps they be stored in plastic boxes in the locked store room, with a list of the contents & taken from the store room each time, used, then packed away?

How else we ensure the items are cared for & last as long as possible?

How can we encourage good behaviour & respect & punish bad behaviour? Smaller groups are easier to control. Respect from the first arrival at the door. A welcome / hello from each volunteer.

If we improve the terrace are the neighbours going to complain?

How often are other donations of equipment received & what sort of things?

Microfinance – MF have 1,000,000CFA to be allocated already, do we give more? Cost is 100,000CFA ...

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We have started spending your donations! THANK YOU AGAIN xxx
We have started spending your donations! THANK YOU AGAIN xxx

Your donations – Un grand responsabilitè!   (published in Senegal)

August 4, 2015 by   Comments(6)

Very exciting & news.. My friend Lucas doesn’t speak much English & as you know my French is basic, so we have a little difficulty communicating! However he explained that I needed to go to the office and sign for all of your generous donations...

I couldn’t quite understand why I had to visit the office.. Surely the donations have been received & they are in the hands of Projects Abroad Senegal??!! Hmm maybe this is some local custom I thought!

I have finally got to grips with the geography of the town, so after French school this morning, I was able to walk to the office. Going anywhere takes a while as EVERYONE wants to either say hello, how are you?, sell you something or ask if you want a horse & cart ride!! The Talibes ask for food or ‘argent’ (money), I try not to give them anything on the streets. I think it is unfair to give something to one or two, and not all of them. I will buy things for the centre instead.  So I get to the office & see lovely Fina, who wants me to complete a feedback form about my experiences so far. Questions about my host family, my health, my work & French course. I explained that it was a little difficult to communicate at my house, but hopefully that problem will be solved when Ingrid arrives today! Yes a new volunteer is moving in from Canada. I am hoping & wishing she is fluent in French.. Fingers crossed! I finally meet with Moctar (the Director of Projects Abroad Senegal) & explain that I am here to sign for my donations, but I am not sure why? He says “Well you are going to spend it! So far we have received 1,420,000CFA the biggest amount ever....!” Wow! I can tell you this is a very large sum of money here!! A baguette costs 150CFA, a coke 700CFA & 30% of the population live on less ...

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Your donations – Un grand responsabilitè!
Your donations – Un grand responsabilitè!

Lost & Found 27 07 15   (published in Senegal)

July 28, 2015 by   Comments(9)

Thank you BA & Iberia for my return business class fare for £250 & millions of Avios. I had all 12 seats to myself & the attention of my own stewardess! I could choose when I had dinner & steal all the soap sachets from the toilet. It doesn’t take long to return to backpacker tendancies. I also stole two toilet rolls from the Business class lounge at Madrid 

Dakar airport is a big fat ‘Welcome to Africa’! The heat, the ebola checks, the humungous visa queues & also the fascination with the very few ‘tu bab’ (Wolof for foreigners – not derogatory just a descriptive word!)

Luggage reclaim is just crazy mental & there are no trolleys to be found anywhere.. Hmm this could make my four bags difficult to maneovuer? It's not all my luggage – two bags are very generous & large doantions of stationery & football strips! I needn’t of worried, as fortunately they had lost one of the bags for me! After jumping in at the deep end with my French, I found a baggage supervisor who found me a trolley & led me round to the heart of the airport to complete my lost luggage form. After another queue & form completion, I returned to a now empty baggage reclaim to see my bag rotating around an entirely different carousel! Bugger, now I am going to have to carry them all I thought 

My volunteer coordinator ‘Habib’ met & accompanied me to the hostel in Dakar where I would wait for another volunteer (Daniel from Sardinia!) & then travel to St Louis in the morning. I joked with Habib that after helping with my bags, there was no need for a gym membership. He could easily come to England as work as local crew, he didn’t ...

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Lost & Found 27 07 15
Lost & Found 27 07 15

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