Coordinating a Peace Corps Work Zone

In 2011, in a process that engaged both staff and Volunteers, the work of Peace Corps Volunteers in Senegal was divided into 23 geographically distinct Work Zones, each with from 6 to 18 Volunteers. The Volunteers in each work zone then nominated one or two Work Zone Coordinators, preferably from different training groups to help ensure institutional memory and a continuity of leadership.

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SUMMARY

The Peace Corps Volunteers of the Fatick-Foundiougne-Djilor Work Zone compiled this report to document and plan collaborative work for 2014, as well as highlight future Volunteer placement priorities. The following report includes:

  • Work Zone Description
  • List of Work Zone Volunteers and short description of their work focus
  • Summary of Work Zone Partners, nature of partnerships, and their contact information
  • Cross Sector Collaboration & Projects over the past year and opportunities for the next year
  • Criteria and priorities for placements of Future Volunteers in Work Zone, proposed sites by training group for the next 2 years

The main points highlighted in this report for Peace Corps Senegal administration attention are as follows:

  • The Fatick-Foundiougne-Djilor work zone needs to be divided so that a new work zone is developed either in the Fatick or Gossas department. The Foundiougne departement encompassing Djilor needs to either find more villages due west of or north of Djilor, or phase out the Djilor region altogether.
  • Volunteers are committed to increasing cross-sectoral work at the Master Farm and Health Post and prioritizing Senegad activities to do publicly as a group, in partnership with local organizations and stakeholders.
  • There is a pressing need for more for technical water training and resources, but Volunteers are unaware as to who to direct questions to or guidance from.
  • As of February 8, 2014 we are still in need of doing a site development tournée        

WORK ZONE DESCRIPTION

Untitled 3 There are three departments in the region of Fatick: Gossas, Fatick, and Foundiougne. The Fatick-Foundgione-Djilor Work Zone encompasses two of those three. Djilor is not a department, but it is a major road town that a high number of Volunteers are concentrated around.   There are currently a total of 5 Volunteers in the work zone:

COMM ECON DEV : Daniel  Keniger

HEALTH: Hannah MacFarlane

HEALTH: Josephine Luu

SUSTAINABLE AG: Taeler Mckay

AG FORESTRY: Mikhael Kazzi

The crops grown in this area are peanuts, millet, maize, rice, all of the main vegetables and the following fruits: mangos, watermelon, cashew apples, papayas, oranges, baobab fruit, bananas, and ditakh.

The city of Fatick is a regional capital with a population between, according to the mayor’s office, 35,000 – 40,000 and its status as an administrative center provides many with salaries, and thus expendable income. The government agencies, schools, NGO offices, and salt processing plant are the major employers in the city. However, the city’s location in the peanut basin means that surrounding areas are primarily agricultural and the city has one quartier dedicated to farming that supplies most of the fruits and vegetables sold in the city’s daily market. Also, the river is a source of income for fishermen in Fatick and Foundiougne. The river separates the Volunteer in Fatick from the rest of the Work Zone.

The city of Foundiougne has a population of 6,000 and sits on the delta 25 kilometers south of Fatick and 15 kilometers north of Djilor. It is a popular launch pad for eco-tours to see the mangroves along the river and its primary sources of income are tourism and fishing. It houses various campements and hotels and governmental and non-governmental agencies such as Oceanium, Eaux et Forêts, WWF, Wamé, La Maison du Pêcheur, and COSPÉ.

The town of Djilor has a population of approximately 2,600 and is surrounded by 44 villages in its communauté rurale. The main sources of income in this area are farming and agricultural work in the crops mentioned above.  The water tables in this area are high. The mangroves are located east and north of Djilor and because this area is surrounded by water, the presence of mosquitos and thus malaria is high. A port is currently being built on both sides of the river between Fatick and Foundiougne, along with a large paved road and power project along R61 (from Foundgioune to Djilor). Scheduled to be completed sometime in 2014, it is to replace the port in Kaolack. Traffic through Fatick, Foundiougne, and Djilor is expected to increase once the port opens, and as a result so will economic activity and the population in this area.

WORK ZONE VOLUNTEERS              

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WORK ZONE PARTNERS

The Fatick-Foundiougne-Djilor Volunteers are partnering with various governmental, non-governmental, and private organizations and individuals to plan and implement projects in the work zone over the past year.  For example:

  • The communaute rurale is contributing nearly 50,000CFA towards purchasing lunch for a group of health workers attending an all day Nutrition & Agriculture training held by Health PCVs and counterparts at the Master Farm in Njomdy.
  • Various partnerships within ChildFund have enabled Volunteers to bring  malnutrition and baby weighing causeries to their sites and “job shadow” health hut visits in the surrounding arrondissement.
  • The Master Farmer in Njomdy, Matrone in Djilor, and Primary school teacher in Boly conducted a large malnutrition causerie at the Health Post We have created a comprehensive “living” spreadsheet that serves as a phone book for new or current Volunteers to access, regardless of how long ago or brief the partnership. For further details, please request one of the following Work Zone Volunteers to share the online spreadsheet.  

CROSS SECTOR COLLABORATION & PROJECTS

Before the rains:

 CEREAMINE – HEALTH POST

  • Hold malnutrition/good nutrition causerie, after baby weighing screening, using complet model
  • Discuss, cook and distribute cereamine (samples)
  • Discuss with Relais how to create a Cereamine cotiser or petit commerce at the post

MORINGA – HEALTH POST

  • Hold moringa causerie, after baby weighing screening, using complet model, cook and distribute samples
  • Add to Cereamine, do a taste test with kids and mothers
  • Install small demo Moringa plot for Relais to eventually use as teaching tool

NUTRITION & AGRICULTURE  – MASTER FARM

  • Review how and why gardens help nutrition in the home
  • Review foods available and can be grown, in hot vs. rainy season, using complet model
  • Round-robin activity of composte, pepinier, and double digging to reinforce proper gardening techniques for healthier produce

SITE DEVELOPMENT – WORK ZONE

  • Individual or paired tournée west of Djilor, around Fatick arrondissement, and Gossas arrondissement based on recommendations from districts, posts, and trusted individuals
  • Each sector identify, visit, and recommend two long term sites based on site survey, and other relevant criteria

  During the rains:

CEREAMINE – HEALTH POST

  • Hold malnutrition/good nutrition causerie, after baby weighing screening, using complet model
  • Discuss, cook and distribute ‘low income’ version of cereamine (samples), add moringa

EARTHWORKS – MASTER FARM

  • Hold training with Presidents  and representatives of community and school gardens in surrounding arrondissement,  to teach irrigation methods and redirecting rainfall (AG)

MICHELLE SYLVESTER

  • Girls scholarship program at CM in Gague Cherif

  After the rains:

MICHELLE SYLVESTER

  • Girls scholarship program at CM in Djilor, Ndorong Serere , Gague Cherif, and Fatick

MAMA AWA tournée – SITE VISITS

  • Discussing family planning, early marriage, girls education to mothers and CM-Lycee  girls

CEREAMINE – HEALTH POST

  • Paint mural of Complet and Cereamine recipe, directions, and modified low-income recipe on wall facing women waiting for baby  weighing

FIELD DAY PREP – MASTER FARM

  • All Volunteers help with post-rain labor, bringing a representative from own village
  • Create space for Health field days

FUTURE VOLUNTEERS

Untitled 5South of Foundgione there is two active work zones: Sokone-Toubacouta and Fatick-Foundgione-Djilor. The latter being the northernmost presence Peace Corps has in the Fatick region. It is relatively small, though located within a close distance to the Djilor road town (with the exception of the CED Volunteer in Fatick and another scheduled to arrive in Foundgioune in May).  Current and previous WZCs couldn’t find a comprehensive historical list of Volunteers in the Djilor arrondissement, however, through the collective stories families have told Volunteers, it is evident each volunteer can point out at least one village near them that was closed within the past five years. Our anciennes recommended a shift in their 2012-2013 Work Zone report, stating that the

  • department of Foundiougne would benefit from having either an UrbanAg or AgForestry Volunteer in or near Foundiougne
  • department of Fatick would greatly benefit from an UrbanAg Volunteer in Fatick, and a SustainableAg and Health Volunteer near Fatick

As of February 8, 2014 we are still in need of doing a site development tournée. We have waited because we have little to no guidance in terms of what administration considered grounds for a recommendation. The site development survey, while thorough, seems too premature to be using as a guide for an initial visit and we would like more information on how Volunteers have started the process of “looking.” Additionally, we weren’t sure if Peace Corps have authorized the creation of a new work zone(s) by moving north. We look forward to the outcome of the upcoming Work Zone Conference, and subsequent presentations from other regions of the country, for further guidance on the main points highlighted in this report.