We leave you with: a video of a puffer-fish trying to get to the open ocean.
And lastly, some election propaganda and news: a Macky rally pamphlet and the front page newspaper in France.
Macky defeats Wade
Front page of newspaper in France
Macky Sall won the second election tour with 65.8% of the vote (Wade lost with 34.2%). There was a 55% voter turnout.
Our last night in Ndioum was like going to a middle-school dance. The high school English club told us to arrive around 6 pm. They ended up picking us up in a car and driving through Ndioum’s market to reach a beautiful house where the club had rented chairs and a DJ system. We were seated at a table that looked out onto a dance floor, bordered by plastic chairs and members of the English club. We waited for hours for a teacher to show-up. Finally we started late around 9:30. Almost everyone gave speeches, including ourselves. Then the club gave us a certificate of honor with a marabout stork in the background. The best part: the certificate was made out to “Mister Paul and his wife.” After a whirlwind of photo-taking, they ushered us into the car and drove us home. It was a great way to say good-bye to Ndioum.
Haby, her daughter Coumba (my namesake), and myself
Our favorite sheep: mama has a gris-gris around her neck
Certificate of honor from English Club
Paul organized a great blood testing tour of Diambo (Evan’s village) and Taredji (Jonno’s village). We tested 87 people. There was a 25-30% syphilis rate and one HIV-positive result.
We spent two nights in Diambo and one night in Taredji. In Taredji, Jonno’s MSS girls (many of them also participated in our girls leadership camp) performed a great theater sketch that attracted a huge crowd. We passed out condoms (in secret to many teenage boys, much in the manner of a drug-deal, and to not so many older women who thought the condoms were candy or medicine) in addition to teaching many adolescents how to put on a condom correctly.
This was a great project to end our service with, especially because it involved working with our two closest friends Evan and Jonno.
Fa Ly taking blood from a patient
Fa Ly taking a blood sample
Jonno explaining how HIV can/cannot be transmitted
Paul hands out peanuts to some waiting patients in Diambo
Evan's brother Sinthiane
Teaching kids about HIV/AIDS
Abused puppy finally gets to play (normally spends his day in a hole)
Hitch-hiking for a ride to Taredji! We ended up walking most of the way.
Girls demonstrate proper condom use
MSS girls ready to do theater
Crowd gathers in Taredji to watch the theater sketch about HIV/AIDS and other sexually-transmitted diseases
One of my favorite activities during my service was helping with baby vaccinations and weighings.
A baby from the "jeere" (bush) village of Kodiolel that just got vaccinated
Baby being weighed!
Coumba vaccinating a child in Ndioum
Coumba and relais weighing an infant
Polio oral vaccination
Bush vaccination village of Kodiolel
14 Candidates in the Senegal Election 2012
Catching up on some photos and blogging. These are from the first round of elections on February 26, 2012.
Lining up to vote
A woman dips her finger into the pink dye to show that she has voted.
A voter picks up a quarter-sheet paper for each candidate on her way to casting a ballot. Behind a curtain, the voter will put her preferred candidate into the envelope and dispose of the other sheets.
A voter casts her vote.
The elections are coming. If you look up Senegal in the news, you can read all about it. Wade’s candidacy was validated and Youssou Ndour’s was not. Protests are happening throughout the country in the large cities, however it is relatively quiet where we live. We finally got a little taste of election this past Friday when President Wade came to visit Ndioum and pray in our grand mosque. The opposition made a small appearance, waving their red flags and sporting red head- and arm- bands. Otherwise, there were women wearing complets made of Wade fabric, talibe waving signs supporting Wade, and cars covered in Wade pictures among other pro-Wade advertisements.
Macky Sall, a popular Pulaar candidate, also made an appearance–however we did not attend this rally but could hear the cars passing by with shouting supporters.
Our poll results of taxi drivers in Dakar during January are summarized here*:
Abdoulaye Wade 1
Macky Sall 1
Idrissa Seck 3
(*Note: This is not a large enough sample pool, and I think one driver sampled was from Guinea and could not even vote in Senegal, but still. There are also many other candidates, many of whom are popular among different populations–something that is not reflected by our poll.)