BTC Ethiopia: Day 4 The Village of Garmaam
We eagerly arose, had early morning coffee, and headed out for our 90 minute rocky-road drive to Garmaam. After passing hundreds of donkeys transporting firewood to Dire Dawa, and countless people making the daily 4 hour walk into the city to sell it, we arrived in Garmaam.
We first were introduced to the committee leaders of the village. These individuals are trained by Global Hope Network International – they drive the activity in the village and help instill a level of ownership that allows their progress to be self sustainable. The committee leaders invited us into their ‘office house’ – a small cement building with chairs. They walked us through who does what in the village and the positive impact that GHNI has already made, in particular, the school house that GHNI helped the village build that allowed them to get teachers and more advanced schooling for their children. The village leaders shared their priority challenges, which are water, water and water. The village has natural resources, motivated people and is small enough to mobilize quickly. These are core characteristics of the villages that GHNI and its leaders choose to work with and support.
After asking questions and talking, we exchanged warm gratitude for the opportunity we ALL were getting, and we proceeded to tour the village. The pictures and descriptions that follow show the rest of our journey that day – seeing the village people, spending time with the children, touring the area with water that is not yet connected to the farm plots, walking with goats, seeing baboons, learning about the crops and other farming challenges and accomplishments, and eventually, wrapping up with a simple meal we bought on our way, and heading back to Dire Dawa.
We had a traditional Ethiopian dinner, debriefed ways to support the villages, and asked the local GHNI managers questions about things we observed or thought. We returned back to our little African compound to write these posts, upload pictures, and enjoy the cool evening breeze over, you guessed it, Ethiopian coffee.
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