In Choma at the provincial house, a place that volunteers pick up their mail, decompress, and come for tri-annual meetings.
I have officially moved to another site (pemba) about 70 km from my original one (keemba). The new site is near the road and I will have electricity and access to other amenities such as more than one vegetable and fruits. When I say official, I mean that by papers and such. However, there are some housing issues at pemba, so I will be in limbo, living at the provincial house for a couple weeks.
The project I will be working with is known as JFFLS and AFFLS (or Junior/Adult Farmer Field and Life Schools).
They are supported by FAO (or the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) and work to assist more vulnerable members of communities in coping with effects of HIV/AIDS. This is done through some direct and indirect support such as food, seeds, agricultural knowledge, LIFESKILLS, psychosocial support, etc. Since I will just now be starting there, I think I will see how things are going there for a few months and will then provide a better picture of what my work actually entails.
They have identified some issues including lack of coordination and background in HIV on the ground and have agreed at a number of levels (district, national, local) to work with a Peace Corps volunteer at the site to assist in such things.
I have left my former community and will still be traveling back there to assist in bringing the new volunteer that will be posted there in about a month’s time up to speed and in checking on some work they are doing there. Given the short distance, there should be no problem accomplishing this.
My community wasn’t happy but they accept it. Many of them complained that they had grown used to my presence and weren’t happy. They are happy for the project and me but are sad for their “loss”. I will be visiting them about every month for a while as I still want to see how my new community and old community can learn from each other given the distance is short and I just want to keep in contact with my “family” and friends there.
On other notes, I finally visited the Victoria Falls for a day and was amazed. I went with a few friends that are working here (from Emory) and one of them bungee jumped off a bridge into a deep canyon. He enjoyed and I think the contact high may be the closest I come to trying it myself.
I am doing well, though I have been getting tired from the copious traveling from place to place setting up my site move.
Best be in the moment though, so I am happy in general.
I hope everyone is well.