On Friday, three members of the GHAPE office went to the funeral of one of our members, Bih Josopha. She was 48 years old and left eight children behind, four of whom are under the age of 14. The daughter had come to the office to inform us of her passing on Thursday, immediately after it occurred, and we decided which office members would go and pay dues. For GHAPE members, attendance at a fellow member’s funeral is compulsory, punishable by a fine. Some of the members were a little discontented when the burial was... Continue Reading >>
Stories tagged with Cameroon
Tuesday was the last day that the former Kiva Fellows, Megan and David, spent at the GHAPE office. The going-away party was really sweet with a board members lunch and gifts of gratitude. The main office in Bamenda is located in a family compound, with an open central area for recreation and cooking. The whole office spent the afternoon preparing the meal of Njama-njama (cooked greens), fufucorn (starchy white food), and chicken that had been freshly slaughtered from the coop out back. Our feast was a celebration for the new friends who had been living and working closely...Continue Reading >>
Tuesday morning at 8:15, all 20 of the new Kiva Fellows were on time, crowded around the breakfast table where Noah’s bagels, pastries and coffee were available to power us through the intense four days of training that would follow. The table in the middle of the training room was perpetually covered with beverages, snacks and laptops for the week we were there. I was extremely grateful for every ounce of caffeine and every handful of trailmix that JD, our Fellows Program Director, had to offer us along with the 800 Powerpoint slides and hours of practice sessions. I could tell in the...Continue Reading >>
I am proud to say that I have earned two blisters in the last week: one from hand-washing my clothes (I’ve now learned to really scrub ‘em), and another from pulling the kernels off corncobs. As a woman who has earned most previous blisters from breaking in new hiking boots or rowing crew, both luxury sports of a sort, this feels different.
Work in its many forms is so deeply ingrained in the culture in Bamenda that it takes shape in language. In pidgin, you would not believe how frequently the words “struggle” and “suffer” are used, usually not...Continue Reading >>
Cameroon. For us, it is the end of a long road. Since we left the U.S. in December, Dave and Megan have set foot in 13 countries, 11 in Africa. Our overland trek started in Casablanca and took us through Morocco/Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senegal, The Gambia, Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, and finally here, Bamenda, the capital city of the Northwest Province, altitude above 1000 meters, surrounded by mountains, green, lush, and yes, the beginning of the “light” rainy season.
Our arrival in Cameroon three weeks ago occurred in several stages.
• First,...Continue Reading >>