Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Final Blog cohort 12

Read the final words of goodbye from Cohort 12.

In 6 months of placement as Team leader, we worked very hard to achieve our goals. And I’m very happy to have contributed of the awareness raising on disability and to change the regards of many people on disabled persons.
Thanks very much for Mrs Eleonore Couldiaty, Mr Jean Pascal KI, Ross and Mrs Diarra Georgette for their support since January 2014. Also I thanks my colleagues Cat, Cedric and Tash , all the ISD volunteers and the members of HSB.
Volunteer one day, volunteer all my life.
Many thanks.

Cohort 12 at the ABPAM art exhibition; from left to right - Gwladys, Rowan, Iain, Jehu, Mary, Dielika, Natasha and Hassan

Hello all, I cannot believe how time has flown by and it is already time to say goodbye to my first cohort of fantastic volunteers. There have been the inevitable highs and lows that come with working in a team and on such a constraint period for all the work that we envisaged achieving but I would say that we have done well and have successfully continued and expanded the work from previous cohorts. Our awareness sessions all had great receptions and I believe we were successful in promoting the message that everyone is able to do sports especially amongst the lycéens. We were also have to hold the ABPAM art exhibition at the end of this cohort, something cohort 11 aimed to do, it was a sheer pleasure to see the children touch and feel all the work that had been produced and able to keep their work to show their families.

The children at ABPAM art exhition
I would just like to thank the whole team for the work and motivation they have put in to these last 10 weeks and wish them all the best. I'll see you Brits back home but hope to see the Burkinabès around the office! Bring on the next ones and the 'cooler' weather!

Natasha Carter, UK Team Leader


3 mois de placements déjà écoulés. Durant ces 10 semaines l’équipe de HSB/ISD a mené dans l’entente et l’harmonie une panoplie d’activités telles que sa participation au festival PASSANA, des séances de sensibilisation, de sport, des sessions d’art. Durant tout ce temps je fus particulièrement marquée par les enfants de l’ABPAM, car je fus émerveillée de voir des enfants vivant avec un handicap pratiquer le sport et s’y plaire.

Je noterais qu’avant mon placement j’ignorais l’existence du sport pour les personnes vivant avec un handicap visuel. A mon avis elles étaient carrément coupées du reste du monde à cause de leur handicap et du même coup elles ne pouvaient rien faire sans l’aide d’autrui. Ce n’est qu’au cours du placement que je me suis rendu compte que j’avais un raisonnement erroné vis-à-vis de ces personnes ; et je pense que nous devons tous ensemble contribuer à leur épanouissement effectif.

Dans l’ensemble ce fut un placement fantastique avec une équipe de HSB/ISD fantastique.
Grand merci à mes team leaders et aux autres volontaires d’avoir contribuer à rendre ce placement incroyable et inoubliable.

Gwladys ZOGONA

HSB-ISD with HSB and the athletes after the awareness raising on national television, BF1

Pupils from CEFISE playing 'bean bag tennis'
The last 10 weeks volunteering for HSB-ISD has been a very enjoyable experience.  On the initial stages of the program I had unrealistic aspirations regarding what I wanted to achieve during my time, which was very frustrating. This was soon erased as I came to grips with the programme and realised the speed and direction to which it is moving and the funding that would be needed for all of my initial ideas.
During my 10 weeks I would have to say how out of all the work we have done,  I have mostly enjoyed the awareness raising sessions in schools we held. This was because you could instantly see the effect of what you being there and giving the session had on the pupils thoughts and perceptions on disabled people. They originally had very negative opinions on disabled people and how they should be integrated into the community, though an hour talk and practical session soon changed their opinions and shows that if this project was magnified to a greater scale then there would be a great improvement of perceptions around the country.
Along with the good times there comes bad times. For us there luckily was not too many, but there understandably were some. The most memorable would be when as a group we would have discussions about other minorities, like homosexuals for example and the Burkinabe volunteers showed that they have very negative opinions and thoughts about them. This was very surprising to see as we are together fighting for human rights, yet they can’t seem to see that every minority group interlink and they are not separated one by one.
Overall it has been a very memorable experience and I hope that the work from cohort 12 and previous cohorts won’t be in vain and HSB-ISD can continue to work for years to come.

Rowan Locke

Ces 03 mois de placement avec l’équipe de HSB-ISD  ont été jalonnés d’activités aussi utiles qu’intéressantes. En effet, la formation, la semaine d’induction, la journée culturelle, le sport matinal avec les enfants (CEFISE, ABPAM), les séances d’art, les sensibilisations (CEFISE, MARIEN, ZINIARE), les discussions en groupe, les échanges culturels… pour ne citer que ceux là, ont été des moments très instructifs et agréables pour moi.  Tout cela m’a permis de porter un nouveau regard sur la situation des personnes vivant avec un handicap et d’explorer de nouvelles manières de les aider.

The children at the art exhibition at ABPAM
Oui, que de liens tissés avec les membres de la cohorte 12 ! Que de souvenirs à chérir !

C’est avec le cœur serré que j’accepte le fait que ce placement se soit terminé si vite. Cependant, je garde bon espoir : ne dit-on pas que quand on entre dans le programme ICS on y ressort plus… 
A présent, cap sur le « action at home ! »  Merci à tous !   AFFAIRE A SUIVRE !!!


So here we are, we have reached the final week, confusing time for how I’m feeling. As much as I am looking forward to getting home, seeing my family and friends, having a warm shower and more importantly having a domino’s pizza, I’m sad to be leaving Burkina Faso. The people out here and the experiences I’ve had here have been and are amazing, I’ve grown attached to my host family and will miss them terribly, the younger children in the family have made such an impression on me and I want to be able to see them grow up and see what becomes of them throughout their lives.
The Lycéens at CEFISE getting to grips with a wheelchair
As far as the project is concerned I am slightly disappointed, as due to budget restrictions we were not able to get as much done as hoped for, the cuts to the budget for this cohort meant us being un-able to do as much as the previous one, not only this but also the numerous power cuts that Ouagadougou experience during this time of year limit any office work we can do.  However I still feel despite this the whole project for us has been relatively successful, first and foremost we gave a lot of children the opportunity to take part in sports and sporting activities which I feel they would not of received if we were not here, the sessions we ran were received by the children brilliantly and from the look on the faces of them while engaging in the activities it was obvious that they enjoyed them.
Thinking back to one of the awareness raising sessions we ran, one of my strongest memories which shows the benefits of what we are doing here, at the start of the session one child stated that you couldn’t be friends with someone with a mental disability because you can’t communicate with them, after the session we asked this lad if he still thought the same, “C’est difficile de communiquer mais on trouve toujours un moyen” was his answer. This translates as “it may be difficult to communicate but you can always find a way”. This simple thing shows that we are making a difference out here, the views of this country on people with disabilities needs to change and one by one we helping this happen.
Iain Powell

Hassan with mini Hassan (Bryan) from ABPAM
Hi everybody nous sommes à la fin du placement et je veux juste vous parler de mes impressions. Au début de mon placement j’étais un peu terrifié par les séances de sensibilisation et je me demandais comment est-ce que j’allais m’en sortir, moi qui n’aimais pas prendre la parole en publique. La plus rude a été la première, les autres se sont bien passées que ce soit au Marien ou à Ziniaré je me suis bien senti et je pense avoir atteint mes objectifs fixés. Autre point, j’ai apprécié le group discussion et les cours d’anglais qui m’ont permis vraiment d’améliorer mon niveau d’anglais. Pour finir j’ajouterai le fait que l’ambiance de travail a toujours été conviviale entre nationaux et Britanniques.

Thank you and God bless ICS


A BIENTOT from Cohort 12

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