Monday, 6 July 2015

1 Week Into Cohort 13 At HSB

Ashley Drake and Lydia Porter at Espace Bambino 
Lucy Stirrat with local children


The first week at cohort 13 has been hard work, with British and nationals having to adapt to each teams style of work. The British volunteers have had to get used to how things are done in Burkina Faso, and national volunteers have had to get used to the structure and organisation that British volunteers usually work under. It's result is hopefully a happy medium as in the end anything that is put in place must be carried on by the locals.

The team itself working at HSB consists of four UK volunteers, four national volunteers and one in-country team leader, Biba. As we are volunteering in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso the main language spoken here is French. The UK volunteers, Ashley, Lucy, and I, have limited ability in French while another UK volunteer Valeriya is able to translate a lot of the time through her understanding. It is however quite hard as she is not fluent and often some information is lost quite easily! The Burkinabe accent is a lot different from the standard european French accent but we try our best and hopefully we will improve by the end of the trip! Often Cedric, the previous team leader, comes in to help with the current project as it is Biba's first time being a team leader, after being a national volunteer.

The start of our team at HSB consisted of a large variety of discussion around fun ways to raise awareness. As everyone had many ideas it was hard at first to make sure everyone understood. We managed through patient translation to create a list of our ideas in the hopes that we would be able to plan and organise their execution. There are many different parts to HSB, all needing support in different ways.

Lydia Porter at Espace Bambino
It was on Thursday that we held the first Espace Bambino session for children with disabilities in Ouagadougou. While it was our aim to hold different activities and conduct physiotherapy in the space next to the office, because of flooding in local areas many of the children could not make it, even the regular few. Therefore, we had one girl who attended, Narissa, and I drew a portrait of her while she coloured in the drawings in books that had been brought by another UK volunteer, Valeriya. 

We also had a discussion about diversity. Using the ICS journal, Ash and Sampoe conducted a presentation with the goal of the discussion to work better together with different types of people. As Ash said, you cannot use visual cues to stereotype but you must instead not only accept the differences but understand that they may lie underneath the surface. As Epiphanie said, some differences you cannot choose, like what religion you are born in to. In my mind, said Issouf, I can treat everyone the same without consideration of their religion. Inoussa added that this acceptance was key to treating everybody the same.

With the lack of internet we have to improvise and be creative with the release of information concerning the welding workshop (ATS) and HSB. Therefore, Ashley, Lucy and Sampoe have been designing leaflets and posters for the welding workshop and Espace Bambino so that we can begin distribution soon to different businesses and organisations.

We hope this week we will be able to source pots or jars so that we can organise with local shops and businesses to place them inside so that people can donate to Espace Bambino. It is a priority of this cohort to make sure we are consistent with the publication of information concerning HSB. Therefore we hope to print labels with the Espace Bambino and HSB logo so that people will recognise us. Furthermore, we will be hosting an open day at Espace Bambino to increase donations when people see where their money is going towards.


First week of settling into HSB (Handicap Solidaire Burkina) office had its challenges, mainly regarding the amount of ideas everyone had to contribute and some linguistic barriers, but overall the team is working well together.

As we represent the part of HSB that deals with fundraising, awareness raising and administrative aspects with this organisation, our first week involved a lot planning and paper work such as working out the budget, deciding on dates for events and getting in contact with other projects that are run throughout Burkina.

At HSB there is also an Espace Bambino which is a place for children with disabilities to receive physiotherapy and get involved in learning and sport activites. It is open every Thursday so during our first week our team had the pleasure of partcipitating in looking after the children and getting them involved in drawing, learning numbers and sport.


Boundaone Issouf and Valeriya Pogorelova
I am Boundaone Issouf, my first week at HSB was really interesting. I played with kids, I had plenty of discussions in English with volunteers of the United Kingdom (UK). I had to write letters of correspondence. In short my first week was very fun and super.

M'oi cest Bounaone Issouf, ma premiere semaine a HSB fut vraiment interessante. J'ai joue avec les enfants, j'ai eu plein de discussions en Anglais avec les volontaires des United Kingdom (UKV), j'ai eu a rediger des lettres de correspondances. En somme ma premiere semaine fut tres amusant et super.


I am Epiphanie Kando and my first week in HSB (Handicap Solidaire Burkina) was very interesting. It is going really well between nationals (Sampoe, Inoussa, Issouf) and the British (Lydia, Valeriya, Ashley and Lucy). Our team leader Biba is just great. It works well and everyone brings their own touch. All is also going well with the HSB staff. They are all nice at HSB.

Je suis Epiphanie Kando et ma premiere semaine a HSB (Handicap Solidaire Burkina) etait tres interessante. on sentendait vraiment bien entre nationaux (Inoussa Issouf Sampoe et Mariam) et aussi avec les britaniques (Valeriya, Lucy, Lydia and Ashley). notre chef dequipe Biba est tout simplement geniale. on travaille bien et chacun apporte sa touche. Avec le personnel de HSB tout va a merveille. Il sont tous gentils a HSB.


Lydia Porter, Sampoe Gninki and Valeriya Pogorelova
Hello! I am M. Sampoe Z. Gninki. I am one of the wonderful HSB team members and we are now working with HSB staff. The first impression that I had of HSB in the first week was really amazing. We first introduced ourselves to the partners to get to know each other. Then we visited the office. We were interacting not only within the team but also with our partners. The staff of HSB were excited to see such a wonderful team showing the desire and readiness to spread awareness and increase its potential to serve people living with disabilities. This first week was enough to make sure I did not make a wrong choice to work with ICS. I will not ramble on too much so thank you in advance.

Salut! Je suis M. Sampoe Z. Gninki, Je suis membre de l'equipe de HSB. En partenariat avec le personnel de Handicap Solidaire Burkina. J'ai eu une bonne impression a la premiere semaine parce nous avions deja etable une base solide de communication eu faisant les differentes presentations avec nos partenaires. Nous avons par la suite visite le lieu du travail et c'etait le debut une bonne collabaration. Le personnel de HSB etait au comble de la joie de voir une equipue gelee et prete de servir les personnes en situation de handicap. Cette premiere semanine etait suffisante de me rassurer que je n'ai pas fait un mauvais choix de travail avec ICS. Bref, D'avance merci a ICS.


Inoussa Zoumbri
Hello, I am Inoussa Zoumbri.
The first week at HSB (Handicap Solidaire Burkina) was a enriching event. We have visited the office and local area of HSB, there is the secretary of Espace Bambino, the kitchen, the drop-in office, the executive office and so on. Espace Bambino is open every Thursday. On the first Thursday we had fun by playing games with the children. The main thing that is done in Espace Bambino is physiotherapy which helps the children with disabilities to improve their mobility and ease in everyday life. The first week allowed us to plan activities for the whole placement. We planned for an event in Koudougou, and in Ouagadougou. We also planned an open day for HSB.

Bonjour je suis INOUSSA ZOUMBRI
La première semaine a la HSB ( Handicap Solidaire Burkina) a ete riche en événement. Nous avons visité les locaux de la HSB, du secrétariat a l'espace Bambino en passant par la cuisine, la comptabilité, le bureau exécutif, les toilettes et j'en passe. L'espace Bambino est animé tous les jeudi. Pour l'ocassion nous avons bien amusé avec les enfants. Le fait important dans ce space est la kinisie theurapie qui aide les enfants en situation de handicap de retrouver la santé. La première nous a permis de récenser les activités et de les planifier durant notre placement. En effet nous avons prevu des sorties de sensibilation a koudougou, et a Ouagadougou. Une journée porte ouverte a ete décidé vers la fin du placement . 

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