Friday 20th September 2013
I woke to cocks crowing and a wailing baby at 6.30 a.m. I had slept soundly and was feeling more myself.
I ran yesterday through my head trying to make sense of all that had happened. There are definitely time management issues in this country, and also issues of capacity building.
The director of SEREP (Self Reliance Promoters) is an incredible person, a true human dynamite. He is genuinely concerned about all the people he works with, and is constantly looking for more ways to help. But I can’t see a natural replacement for him if he was to unfortunately be run over by a bus tomorrow, (or knocked off his bike).
So many people here have great ideas but through lack of succession planning the empires they build slowly crumble when they die, often through over work. It’s an issue I hope to raise with him before I leave.
By the time I got past the shock of a cold shower and into the lounge everyone had left. There was, however, a large home-made birthday card on the table for me, signed by all the other residents. Six signatures. I was wrong there are seven of us in the house. Two Germans and five British.
I was touched for the first time today. The second time was when Fred took me to the school to meet the children. After inviting me to introduce myself he cleverly engineered the topic around to my birthday, and the whole school wished me happy birthday in song. I didn’t see that one coming.
I sat and watched the annual prefect election. With only 60 pupils a total of 12 prefects were being elected. The exercise took about two hours, but it was Friday, the end of the week, and there was a healthy mix of seriousness and humour.
I was later given my time-table. I’m mostly going to be teaching what appears on the time-table as ‘Inter Active’. It will be a mixture of performance arts, personal development including public speaking, and moral development.
I think I sold myself well to the school and most of the students appeared keen to begin working with me. I start on Monday with Class 4 – 16-17 year olds. As it’s a secondary + school the youngest pupil I’ll teach is 12, and the oldest is 20.
I’m looking forward to beginning, but also looking forward to seeing the health and advocacy projects. With approximately 14 hours per week teaching I should be able to fit them in within the week.
I also asked if I could stay with a family at some stage. It looks as though a weekend will be most appropriate. They may not necessarily be Tikar but certainly it should be possible.
I also realised that Fred, the director is Tikar. He’s going to give me a book to read to find out more about the history of the Tikar people.
There’s been some talk about going out to listen to some music tonight – if it doesn’t rain.