David has been visiting the Ghanaian teachers he has befriended throughout the Nabdam school system. At the primary school level, he sees reductions in class sizes and increases in the proportion of trained teachers. And together, we have been to two schools and a nutrition center that will receive donations from YWF (Yakote Women Farmers) for school lunch programs during this school year.
Monday began with a trip to Gunwagre Primary (a bumpy, dusty 3 mile motorcycle ride into the bush from Yakote) to meet with the headmaster, the head teacher, PTA chairman, Assemblyman, the chief’s representative, the women organizing the cooking, and others with responsibilities in the community. After the purchase and transport of food staples at the Bolga market next week, Gunwagre will be prepared for the lunch program to begin on February 1, about the time that food becomes scarce in the households of local subsistence farmers. For the past three years the community of Gunwagre has supported the YWF lunch program with a community garden for small, white beans. What I did not know was that the farmers walk 2 miles into the bush to reach the garden. There it is far from the unfenced livestock that would almost certainly destroy the plants. The beans are now harvested. After threshing, it looks like the yield will be a very significant 400 pounds.
In regards to the Gunwagre students, the childen that were grade 1 when the lunch program began, are just now of an age to have completed junior high in June 2015. Of those, three students successfully completed junior high (for which they must leave the village) and have qualified for high school. We are so proud of them and excited for their future. The photos are 2 of the students headed for high school, along with the Gunwagre headmaster.
The student photo below is a primary grade 4 classroom. The other photo is the harvested beans (yet to be threshed) and our most helpful Yakote assemblyman Jonas Timbire along with two of the cooks.