After a very low key couple of days in Niamey, I’m ready to head to the bush tomorrow! I’m sure I’ll have endless stories to share when I return. For now, I just wanted to post a brief update before I leave.
I purchased 50 mosquito nets from a German NGO working in Niger, at less than $10 each. Rather than sell them to villagers at a reduced price (since that might alienate those in greatest need) I’ve decided to distribute them freely to high-risk groups. First, any woman who gave birth in the past year and doesn’t yet sleep under a mosquito net. Then, any woman with children under 2 (that might cover just about everyone!!!). If there are any nets left, I’ll hand them out to other families with children who have suffered from malaria. And, lastly, to older kids who are enrolled in the school. I’m hoping the distribution goes smoothly, and that the intentions of the gift are understood.
I’ve learned that a traditional midwife training will be taking place (led by a Peace Corps volunteer) in the market town near my village while I’m there, and one woman from Tokoye-Bungou will take part. That should be a great entry point for talking about health issues, and gauging the greatest needs of the village. It also means that there will be some American volunteers within walking distance, and since market day is Thursday perhaps we can have a little pseudo-Thanksgiving celebration. Maybe a grilled chicken and french fries? Really wishing I’d packed a can of cranberry sauce…
Enjoy the holiday and I’ll have lots to share when I return in a week or so.
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