Friday, March 21, 2014

Week 9 - Open Day!!

So, by far our busiest week in Burkina Faso is finally over. It started out as normal as ever, but quickly descended into a maelstrom of stress and late nights in the office. All for the best though, the Open Day was a great success!

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday were spent trying to organise music and speakers for the open day, which wasn’t helped at all by the long, daily power cuts! The ‘coupures’ really got in the way of all the printing we needed to do (of pictures, captions and labels for souvenirs) as each time the power came back, it would shut off again before the desktop in the office had a chance to boot up! Thursday and Friday were hectic; we kicked off at the usual time of 8 AM but found ourselves enduring our own sweaty clothes in the power-starved office 12 hours later on both days! Everything was finally starting to come together though, pictures and their captions were being mounted up on walls, the souvenirs were coming in thick and fast and, in the brief moments when we actually had electricity, we finished printing everything we needed.

As if that wasn’t enough, Friday night saw us rush back home to prepare the food for the big day itself. This mission was spearheaded by Rory and Pippa, whose determination and hard work into the early hours of the morning, even after such an exhaustive couple of days, was nothing short of admirable. It paid off too; the hours spent in the kitchen the previous night had produced a magnificent selection of Tokan Spaghetti Bolognaise, Potato and Tokan Croquettes, Guacamole served with Tokan Chips, not to mention the excellent Tokan Satay, a favourite among the British volunteers.

This leads us quite nicely onto Saturday, the Open Day. The aim of the day was to showcase to the local community the wonderful work that the women at Djigui Espoir do. We also wanted to display all the different ways in which tokan can be cooked, the customers seemed to enjoy all of the food we made, so fingers crossed more people will start buying tokan. A good time was had by all, with everyone eating and drinking far too much and buying loads of our lovely products!

Feeling rather exhausted, we spent our Sunday relaxing by a pool and enjoying the sunshine. 

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