Stories tagged with Africa

May 5, 2012 TG Togo

Michael Slattery | KF17 | Togo

Is Togo much different from what the 1969 edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica has to say?  Agriculture still dominates the economy, people still haul in the fishing nets by hand on the beach in the morning, pagnes are still sold in the markets, and animism is still practiced–though this not as much as before.  Pictures don’t define a nation, so read on.

Dusk in Lomé is a special time when people leave their...

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May 5, 2012 KH Cambodia

Compiled by Michael Slattery | KF17 | Togo

Despite the often upbeat tone of fellows’ posting on the blog, I’ll be the first to admit that the position entails some universal hardships.  There is the occasional social isolation that leaves you Saturday night at home with a book and bottle of the local plonk, despite apparently leading a life of swinging exoticism and sun-drenched adventure.  There’s is a lot of driving around, waiting, driving some more, and then getting told some tall tales by people who look at you like you’re definitely one of those foreign imbeciles that...

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Apr 4, 2012 TG Togo

Michael Slattery | KF17 | Togo

My favourite breakfast at the commonplace street-side caféteria. A three-egg omelette made with shallots, tomatoes and spicy green peppers stuffed into a baguette. The café au lait is prepared using instant coffee and sweetened condensed milk. French influenced and yet distinctly West African. Price, 450 FCFA for the sandwich and 150 FCFA for the coffee, or total USD $1.20.

For those who love to eat as much as I do, I salute you...

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Apr 4, 2012 CM Cameroon

Natalie Sherman | KF 17 | Cameroon

What do you get when you combine service learning, microfinance and the enthusiasm of youth?  Well, at the American School of Yaoundé (ASOY), you’d have yourself a pretty innovative and well-organized microcredit program… and the 12th grade Global Issues class of Mrs. Kelly Vaughan Owens has done just that.

AMFO class participants and administrators sign loan disbursements.

...

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Apr 4, 2012 LR Liberia

Ryan Cummings | KF 17 | Liberia

It’s no secret that microfinance institutions provide a variety of beneficial services to communities beyond just loans.  In addition to micro-credit services, BRAC Liberia also runs a community health program and an agricultural program to improve the quality of life for its borrowers and the community as a whole.

A Young Girl Selling Vegetables At The Market

The agriculture program provides...

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Apr 4, 2012 TG Togo

Michael Slattery | KF17 | Togo

“The does, who had never dug in their lives before, enjoyed the work. Both Hyzenthlay and Thethuthinnang told Hazel that they had no idea how much of their frustration and unhappiness in Efrafa had been due simply to not being allowed to dig.” (Watership Down, Chapter 41)

This past week, a paper called the World Happiness Report came out.  According to the report, Togo came in dead last in happiness...

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Apr 4, 2012 CM Cameroon

Compiled by Chris Paci | KF16 & KF17 | Ukraine

The Quirimbas Archipelago from above - Micaela Browning, Mozambique

It’s been a busy week here on Kiva Stories from the Field! Most of our KF17 fellows have been in the field for two months by this point, and they’ve been drawing on their wealth of on-the-ground experience to unpack some of the more complex and troubling aspects of life in their host societies. In a series of fascinating posts, our...

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Apr 4, 2012 CM Cameroon

Natalie Sherman | KF17 | Cameroon

This week has been one of many firsts here at ACEP Cameroun.  Not only has the MFI’s partner page officially gone live, but the bank’s inaugural Kiva borrower, Nathalie, has just received her loan.  I watched with pride as ACEP’s Kiva Coordinator reviewed with Nathalie her disbursement paperwork and then walked her over to the cashier’s station.  It’s a sensation I’d liken to how one must feel when sending a son or daughter off to the first day of school- a mixture of joy, reassurance and perhaps just the tiniest bit of apprehension as to...

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Mar 3, 2012 MZ Mozambique

Micaela Browning | KF17 | Mozambique

The Quirimbas Archipelago in Northern Mozambique is a paradisiacal chain of 24 verdant islets blessed with the tropical vacationer’s holy trinity: ivory sands, ubiquitous royal palms, and resplendent turquoise waters . Last weekend, I was fortunate enough to have the privilege of visiting Quirimbas, which – I figured – would be a pleasant respite from the toils of city life.

View of the Quirimbas from our somewhat terrifying 4-...

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Mar 3, 2012 TG Togo

Michael Slattery | KF17 | Togo

Football: what more needs to be said?

For the past number of weeks I’ve been training with my microfinance institution’s football club, WAGES FC.  Early on in my stay, I found out that most of the male loan officers I was spending my days with were members of the team.  This didn’t surprise me after a certain point: the MFI was interested in placing me with their best agents.  Well-rounded people are generally active in various...

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