Saturday, December 8, 2007

TODAY IN KIBAKWE


I’d like to devote this blog post to my friend Ryan Knudson and his ESL class at Racine Horlick High School in Racine, Wisconsin.
Today in the village of Kibakwe in the Mpwapwa District in the Dodoma Region in the country of Tanzania on the African continent, everything is just fine. The temperature ranges between high 60s at night to high 80s and 90s during the heat of the day. There’s a fair amount of wind every day and the climate is very dry in this region, but the rainy season start here next month. Beginning in January, it will rain every day for about three or four months and everything will be lush and green until May or June. We’ve had a few days of rain over the past month and even that has made a little bit of a difference in how the landscape looks. Peanuts, corn, sorghum, sunflower, and finger millet are the major crops of this area. Papaya trees can be seen just about everywhere in Kibakwe. Most of the people who live in Kibakwe make their livings as farmers, either on their own land or working for someone else as a laborer getting paid in a share of the crop. Most people in Kibakwe live in poverty in modest houses made from mud bricks. During the dry season, from July until December, people who normally work on the farms are unemployed. The biggest obstacle facing the people of Kibakwe is draught. We rely on the mountain village of Wotta for our water supply: if Wotta gets rain, then we get water in Kibakwe. As Peace Corps Volunteers, my wife Carla and I, are in the very early stages of trying to acquire grant money to repair the intake that supplies Kibakwe with water. If the intake is repaired, Kibakwe will be able to get more water more regularly than it does now. We are also in the planning stages of other future projects such as a sign campaign that promotes awareness about malaria and what you can do to protect yourself against the disease, a program that would provide primary school students with a nutritious breakfast, and video nights where the community is invited to watch educational videos about HIV/AIDS prevention. We would like to do some projects with students back in the U.S. that would promote a cultural exchange between our two nations: this is one of the fundamental goals of the Peace Corps. It is the aim of Peace Corps that through cultural understanding and awareness of issues that development will continue in places like Kibakwe, Tanzania. If you would like to learn more about the U.S. Peace Corps please visit http://www.peacecorps.gov/ .

1 comment:

CINTHYA said...

HELLO!!! I'm one of Mr. Knudson students my name is Cinthya Ramirez what i've read so far it seams to me that i will never be able to live like that but then i think that it will be like a chalenge for me and for everybody. But i'm glad you guys join to help other people who needs help THANK YOU!!!!