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LanceHunter
Nov 12, 2016



Building off the dysentery example: What would you say the average level of knowledge around stuff like germ theory/good sanitation practices, etc? Would you say that most folks already get it and it's more about getting access to stuff like soap and infrastructure for sanitizing, or is it more that something where education is still needed?

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mobby_6kl
Aug 9, 2009

"You are the best poster... do not let anyone say otherwise."


The_Continental posted:

...
You did have some people, usually Peuhl, or Tourag, who lived a truly nomadic lifestyle. Typically their kids would not be in school and stricter rules would be in place. In these extremely rural societies women are essentially property. I didn't really engage with these populations on a professional basis because it just didn't seem like my place to try to convince some nomadic herder that his daughters should be in school when he didn't see the value in it.
...
Yeah understandably you wouldn't want to appear as whitey coming over and telling the uncivilized natives how to live. But that said, how far does that gets extended? From some very brief research, it seems that FGM is very much a thing in West Africa and Burkina in particular. Have you observed it (I mean not thee actual process, more like consequences) in you region, or did it ever come up in discussion? Is this something that can or has to be brushed off when trying to promote girls' education?

Weka
May 5, 2019

And if you gaze long into an abyss, you will say `look, no ring.`

LanceHunter posted:

Building off the dysentery example: What would you say the average level of knowledge around stuff like germ theory/good sanitation practices, etc? Would you say that most folks already get it and it's more about getting access to stuff like soap and infrastructure for sanitizing, or is it more that something where education is still needed?

Would you also go into what the level of education was like? Was it roughly comparable to America at similar years?

The_Continental
Jan 13, 2019

My god, Winston, is that infernal sun still giving my buttocks that entirely too cool smirk?!


LanceHunter posted:

Building off the dysentery example: What would you say the average level of knowledge around stuff like germ theory/good sanitation practices, etc? Would you say that most folks already get it and it's more about getting access to stuff like soap and infrastructure for sanitizing, or is it more that something where education is still needed?

I'd say there is still education needed. Again, these problems are magnified the further you move away from cities and regional centers. There was a big push while I was there to get hand-washing demonstrations into primary schools, as kids were the most likely to catch some sort of infection from putting their hands in their mouths. A lot of schools had hand-washing stations set up, but proper use and maintenance could become an issue.

Access to materials was certainly an issue. There is a material called Tansagex that is widely used in soap making applications. If a primary school wanted to start a business making and selling soap, they would need someone who had a moto to ride into the capital to purchase it from a chemicals vendor.

mobby_6kl posted:

Yeah understandably you wouldn't want to appear as whitey coming over and telling the uncivilized natives how to live. But that said, how far does that gets extended? From some very brief research, it seems that FGM is very much a thing in West Africa and Burkina in particular. Have you observed it (I mean not thee actual process, more like consequences) in you region, or did it ever come up in discussion? Is this something that can or has to be brushed off when trying to promote girls' education?


FGM was definitely something I was aware of, but didn't feel was within my ability or programmatic goals to address. It is technically illegal in Burkina Faso, but still widely practiced. If the central government is already condemning it, it seemed out of place for me as a foreigner to call out a deeply seated (although barbaric) cultural and religious practice. Additionally, I came across several groups who used very graphic and realistic medical models that would travel from village to village in order to educate people on the dangers of FGM, especially related to the loss of elasticity and childbirth. I saw it as a very sensitive issue that was (too slowly) being addressed in an appropriate manner by local actors.

I did run a class on condom use and safe sex, as early pregnancy is highly linked to academic attrition. I didn't facilitate it personally, and acted more as an organizer. I was able to provide a cool wooden penis and vagina and condoms but enlisted the services of a local healthcare worker to do the actual talking. This was as much for the comfort of the students as it was for me.

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