Friday, July 17, 2015

And on the third summer, the blog rose again

Hello everyone! 

Well, the blog is back in action. Many of you asked for updates, and though I don't feel blogging is my forte, perhaps this old page may be resurrected for the time being. Here goes!
For those of you who don't know, this is my third summer here in Lusaka, Zambia. In the past few years I spent time training teachers and helping students prepare for government exams at 2 different organizations, Chikumbuso and Mercy Ministries. This time around, I'm working with the Zambian Ministry of Health on a community-based research partnership. For the past six months the Ministry (the equivalent of the Department of Health in the US) and I crafted a research project based on an area of interest to the country--youth alcohol abuse. Zambia claims international renown as one of the highest regions for alcohol abuse, yet qualitative understandings as to reasons for this this prevalence remain unstudied. Right now the Ministry of Health is in the process of generating new policies regarding alcohol, and they hope to utilize this research to inform the policy. Crossing my fingers! 

It's safe to say there were a few bureaucratic delays. As endemic in the US, government operations take quite a bit of time. However, by the end of the first week, we were able to submit the project for ethical review. In my spare time over here, I’m working with Chikumbuso to create a Community Health Workers Training for their community, Ng’ombe, and teaching at Mercy.

I feel unceasingly grateful for the opportunity to return to Zambia and see wonderful friends once again. AAAAND this time I’m not riding solo, my boyfriend Will is also here conducting research with the University of Zambia! Here are a few pictures from the time so far…I’ll try to keep this page updated!

Hanging out with a cheetah! 

Dinner with our good friend Danny in his home in Kalingalinga

Lunar Moonbow over Victoria Falls!

There are power shortages all across Southern Africa because of we eat cookies by flashlight (special thank you to Will's mom Rhonda for the delicious treats!)

So happy and excited to spend time at Mercy and reconnect with all of the kids and teachers! 

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