Friday, March 7, 2014

Proofreading and Pop Songs

Hello readers!

Excuse the lateness of our posting, Team Inclusive Sport Research has been extremely busy as of late.

So what exactly have we been up to?

With our second month here in Burkina coming to a close, and an imminent visit of our Programme Manager to the IS offices in York looming, it’s all hands to the deck to make sure that a suitably polished edition of both the French and English versions of the research report is complete. We’ve reviewed and proof-read, translated and edited, amended and formatted, and now if we keep everything crossed we might just be ready before the end of tomorrow.

Regular readers of the blog will be familiar with all things research-report, but for any new readers out there (welcome) the report is the culmination of several months of detailed research into disability sport in Burkina Faso, with specific focus on the human, material and financial resources available to the FBSPH/NPC and its affiliated clubs. The research report, when completed, will be one of only very few documents of its kind, so it’s a pretty big deal!

Another principal objective of our team is the technical capacity building of the Federation. A key part of this focuses on the development of ICT and English language skills, which will be achieved through regular classes provided by the Research Team. As part of our planning for these lessons, we recently held an idea-sharing session with some of the IS team currently working at Djigui Espoir (a cooperative for disabled women who produce soya and cereal products here in Ouaga). Certain members of the team at Djigui have a lot of previous experience in teaching English, as well as in fundraising – two areas of work which we are looking to develop within the Inclusive Sports Research Team. Following closely the tried-and-tested methods suggested by the Djigui Espoir team, the preparation of unit-based English and ICT lessons is in full swing, and discussions have taken place regarding the set-up of an athlete-sponsorship site – watch this space!

Over the last couple of weeks, there have also been several meetings held between the IS programme team and the Federation. These meetings are essential in advancing the work completed by IS, as it is only with Federation approval that we can carry out activities in their name. Recently, IS has been able to work with the Federation so as to explain and better understand the needs and expectations of both parties, and discuss the best way in which to achieve positive outcomes in relation to the project objectives. Daily meetings over the last week between the Burkinabe contingent of the Paralympic Research Team and both the General Secretary and the Technical Capacity Director of the Federation has also facilitated the creation of a sparkling new budget for the function of the Federation and its affiliated clubs; now it’s just a case of doing some serious fundraising…

If you missed our previous blog post, then scroll down to read a more detailed account of our most exciting activity to date – a Torball event based here at ABPAM in honour of a visiting party of staff and students from the Frederick Gough School, North Lincolnshire. For those of you who don’t have time to scroll, Frederick Gough school have kindly worked to fundraise money for IS Burkina projects, and a select few students were chosen to come to Ouagadougou to see the effects of their fundraising efforts in action. The Torball event was very well received, offering ABPAM students the perfect opportunity to showcase their sporting skills, whilst simultaneously giving the Frederick Gough contingent a unique insight into the world of disability support in Burkina (no doubt they’d agree there’s more to it than meets the eye….).

Possibly the most dramatic change to our team since our last blog post is the news that Sayouba has left us for pastures new. We obviously wish him well with all his new endeavours, but it was definitely harder than anticipated to wave goodbye to such a valuable team member; however the Karaoke night held in his honour certainly helped to ease the transition – we may not have Sayouba any more, but we’re not about to forget his dazzling rendition of Backstreet Boys’ ‘I want it that way’.

Although we are sad to see Sayouba leave, the blow is most definitely lessened by the fact that we have been able to introduce Dielika into our team. Within minutes of being in the office she had taken up Sayouba’s mantel and was proofreading like there was no tomorrow. She’ll definitely fit in well around here.

With two-thirds of our placement in Burkina already complete, the British volunteers are well and truly settled into Burkina life. Whether it’s holding a discussion with friends over a cup of tea, haggling over the price of tomatoes in the market, or crossing the road amidst a throng of mopeds, we can definitely hold our own. This realisation is met with some sadness however, as with only a few weeks left here in Burkina it seems that saying goodbye to this vibrant culture which we have come to know and love will be a near impossible task. We’ll just have to make sure every last minute here counts.

Alas, report completion and Federation capacity-building exercises call!

Until next time.

1 comment:

  1. Great work in Burkina Faso !! The research report is very informative and useful in taking forward our work with The Paralympic Committee there. Thanks to all the volunteers for their hard work on this!
    Jo CEO
    international Service