Monday, February 25, 2013

Weekend with deaf, blind, and three kings: work hits full stride

This is a busy work week for us as we finalize the deliverables on our projects.  We have made progress on the strategic plan, will finalize training and development of templates for accounting and project monitoring, and meet with a few key organizations.  Today we visited Pact Nigeria, a local agency aligned with USAID.  The team got great news on Thursday evening as they learned that they were awarded a $13 million naira ($82k) grant for a second phase of programs for orphaned and vulnerable children.  We were very impressed with Pact and the role they are playing in social development in Nigeria. 

We had another eventful weekend.  On Saturday we visited the School for the Deaf and Blind in Ikere-Ekiti where we performed a community service and spent time with the children at the school.  Our services included digging irrigation ditches (my team, and boy was it hot!), putting together computers, washing clothes, weeding, and other assorted tasks.  We also played a soccer match with some of the older deaf children, and danced to African music courtesy of a school group.  The kids would approach us in groups and strike up conversations about everything from where we live to wanting our phone numbers.  It was a nice and fulfilling way to spend our Saturday.


On Sunday we made a stop at Ero Dam and then visits to three different Ekiti kings:  the Onikun of Ikun, the Onigogo of Igogo, and the Oore of Mobaland.  These meetings were in communities about an hour outside of Ado Ekiti.  The protocol is that when you are with government officials on a trip, if you pass through their community you should stop by for a visit.  So we did.  One of the visits was a formal presentation (welcome speech, introduction of chiefs, king’s speech), followed by a luncheon in an activity hall.  Note the plate in the photo below.  It is a typical plate of meat, vegetable, and pounded yam.  The meat was a combination of chicken, goat, and probably bushmeat, and was an assortment of actual meat, heart, liver, intestines, and who knows what else.  The vegetable dish was very spicy, as are a lot of their dishes.

Nigeria #ibmcsc


  1. How interesting. How are adjusting to the local cuisine?

    1. Hi Patty. The local cuisine is quite interesting and have sampled it on several occasions. You eat with your hands, it's typically very spicy (so I have to try and tone it down), and it's typically similar to the photo. Fortunately in our hotel we also get some more western fare so we can pick and choose what to eat. It would be tough for me to eat Nigerian cuisine at every meal.