This is Martha Wagley and you donated to my community's PCPP solar grant. I live in the Thaba Tseka District of Lesotho in a small village in the mountains, about 8 hours from the capital, Maseru. I'm a native of Washington State and have been in Lesotho since 2014.
I wanted to say thank you so much for donating to my school's solar power project and give you a brief report of how the project proceeded.
We started the Mokotjana Solar Panel Project in April 2016 to improve academic achievement at our school.
In September, the staff developed a plan to implement new teaching practices with the help of the solar power. They identified academic areas in which paper resources could significantly improve student learning, and have budgeted for the purchase of more paper and ink - made possible by the money saved through not using a generator. They also pledged to provide paper testing four times a year, instead of just providing students with blackboard testing. We implemented the paper testing methods for the final exams this November and we are hopeful that these academic improvements will help students achieve passing scores on the national exit exams in the coming years.
As Lesotho is a landlocked country, we bought the solar system in South Africa to save money. It only took us a week to install the system and we now have a fully functioning printer, and light for security purposes and night classes. We finished installing the system on November 18th.
The teachers have already begun to use the system to improve academic achievement and are excited to implement the rest of their plan during the next school year, beginning in January 2017.
We are very thankful for your donation. Without you the project would not have been possible. I have attached a couple photos of the installation (one of the wiring to the classrooms from the staff room and one of the installation of the solar panels on the roof) and the students writing the paper exams.
October 1, 2016 Partnership Dinner to Celebrate the
56th Anniversary of the Independence of Nigeria
By Greg Zell (Nigeria 62-64)
Travel Coordinator, Returned Peace Corps Volunteers of South Florida, Inc.
The group met up in Johannesburg and went straight to Tribes restaurant in the Emperor’s Palace casino complex for drinks and a bit of ceremony to initiate the 3 newbies Natalie, Ted, and Maria, plus Lisa who visited Morocco previously. Johannesburg will now be Jo'burg always. Now that they were going to be Africa hands, they would no longer say, “Johannesburg.” From now on it would be, “Jo’burg.”
At dinner, most tried the ostrich steak fillet (farm-raised, of course) with berry sauce, washed down with a splash of South African bubbly. Both were proclaimed “delicious.”
Next morning was early, the first of many, for an hour and half flight to Windhoek (vind hook), the pretty capital of Namibia.
We were met at the airport by Stewart, our fantastic guide. A 34 year old native of Zimbabwe, he said he was on his way to becoming a hooligan when he decided to pull himself together, started studying wild life and went to guide school. All his younger siblings have African names. For him, his mother just liked “Stewart.” He started by setting us straight: Some of you have heard of Africa time. Namibia was a German colony. We do everything on German time. And so it was. We boarded our “safari Ferrari”, as he called it, actually an enclosed air conditioned Toyota Land Cruiser for 7 of us and Stewart. Off we went on a short tour of the charming capital. Before heading to the coastal dunes, largest in the world, we stopped at a grocery store for Stewart to fill our coolers with lunch goodies and drinks. Our lunchtime routine: Stewart would pull up under a nice tree. We all pitched in to set up the folding table and chairs, unpack the coolers, chow down, and repack. (Story Continued on our Travel page).
Over 70 RPCVS, families and kids enjoyed the weekend in The Keys
House of Pizza - Key Largo - Friday Night - September 9th, 2016
Amoray Dive Resort - Host Hotel for the 2016 RPCVSF Retreat
To Locate and Donate to a Peace Corps Partnership Project,
Please click the following link: Peace Corps Partnership Program
or Attend an RPCVSF Partnership Dinner
April 7, 2016 - RPCVSF held its' first Partnership Dinner on a weeknight, and the dinner was a sellout. The event raised $554 for a Multipurpose Health Building in Zambia. The dinner was held at Taste Buds of India, organized by Doris Vincent and Subrata Basu spoke on his recent experience as a Peace Corp Volunteer in Belize. Picture Above shows attendees in the process of selecting a Partnership Project.
July 29th, 2016 - RPCVSF received the following e-mail:
This will be my last update as the library has officially opened!!! It went off without a hitch. In attendence were 15 Peace Corps Volunteers, 5 village Headmen, 600 community members, The Chief, and the Provincial Officer for the Ministry of Education. We finished with about 3000 books of varying reading levels. There were acrobatics, traditional dances, rings of fire, poems, songs and many speeches. We danced, we cried and we read books! This week we had our first classes in the library and the students were thrilled! Next week we will be training a temporary librarian as the district has promised to send us a full time librarian next term!
I would like to thank you all again for your kindness and generosity. In the celebratory speeches you were thanked time an time again and asked to come and visit any time.
Please enjoy the pictures attached below. Thanks again!
All the best,
Sydney and the Nazilongo Community, Nazilonga, Zambia
May 19, 2016 - RPCVSF received the following e-mail:
I would like to send a warm thank you to the Returned Peace Corps Volunteers of South Florida for supporting my PCPP grant in Zambia! Your contribution will go a long way in helping my community complete a brand new mother's shelter and youth education center in this rural community, and we truly appreciate it.
Community Health Improvement Project
Peace Corps Zambia
2017 Group Travel
Under consideration in 2017: a trip to Moscow and St. Petersburg arranged
with assistance from former RPCVSF President Tuey Murdock (Colombia);
A safari to Tanzania including Zanzibar to see the Great Migration of the
wildebeest possibly with a side trip to the Zimbabwe (best) side of
Travel tip: Interested in a weekend in Dubai? Check the very special offers
by Emirates Airlines out of Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood International Airport.
Save the Month of June, 2017: Based on our successful safari this year,
email@example.com is working on a 12 day safari to either Botswana or
Tanzania. We hope to have the package ready for an early January, 2017,
Travel Coordinator: Gregory Zell (Nigeria 62-64) firstname.lastname@example.org
This is not a fund raiser. No organization funds are involved. The Travel Coordinator is not compensated.
A program of Returned Peace Corps Volunteers of South Florida, Inc.