Linda Koenigsmann (Allemagne) 2013

Linda Koenigsmann (Allemagne) 2013

lindaCameroun…qu’est-ce que je savais avant d‘être venue ? Pas beaucoup. Bien sur, le séjour était bien organisé par Bobga Gerald et Hope Foundation/ Clotaire Ntienou et WEBDEV Foundation, quand même, je ne savais pas exactement où je vais rester, où je vais travailler avec qui je vais vivre. Une fois arrivée à l’aéroport, j’ai été frappée par la chaleur…;-) le transport à travers de Douala, la nuit dans le bus pour arriver à Bangoua, le village où je passai mes deux mois, était un tour d’un alentour jamais vu. Situé dans les montagnes, avec le sable rouge typique pour l’Afrique je me sentais dès le début à l’aise. Je n’aurais pas pu tomber mieux sur ma famille d’accueil. Je dirais que famille d’accueil n’est pas le bon mot, plutôt ma famille à l’autre côté du monde. Elle était super accueillante est tout de suite j’étais la fille, la sœur, la cousine.

Après une présentation au Collège Evangélique de Bangoua et à l’Ecole primaire de Ndepnou, je commençais à travailler un jour après. Il n’y avait pas beaucoup de temps pour s’habituer… juste deux heures d’observation à l’école primaire qui m’ont montré une manière d’éducation marqué par la force. Ca je ne pouvais pas accepter pour mes propres cours (Anglais, EPS, Allemand). Je voulais savoir si ca marche aussi sans le bâton comme deuxième maître. Je dois dire que les deux premières semaines étaient dures, je devais m’habituer aux enfants, les enfants à la blanche. Mais avec les cadeaux amenés de l’Allemagne j’arrivais à motiver mes enfants. Les cours d’EPS faisaient trop de plaisir pour moi comme professeur car je voyais des enfants qui profitaient de pouvoir se bouger pendant le long jour sur les banques. Mais je vous dis, planifier des cours d’EPS sans avoir un seul maillot, un plot, un ballon, une ligne, pas d’internet, pas de livres, c’est vraiment difficile. On apprend de travailler avec les circonstances, les conditions et il faut devenir créatif. Tout l’effort vaut le coup, les enfants te redonnent tout ! Ils commencent à s’adapter, à travailler avec toi, à sourire… La plus belle des choses était que tous les enfants du village me connaissaient et n’importe où je passais, ils me saluaient : « Bonjour Madame Linda !! ».

Avant d’aller à Cameroun, je me suis promenée par des entreprises et boutiques en demandant des petits dons. Grace à eux, je pouvais réaliser une motivation (crayons de couleur – Volksbank ; ballons, des Jojos – VEKA ; stylos, billes – Deutsche Bank) et du plaisir (donation des brosses à dents aux petits enfants du village – Zahnärztekammer Westfalen-Lippe ). Une entreprise, le VEKA AG qui m’a offert un don de 400 €, m’a donné la possibilité d’acheter six tableaux, six poubelles pour l’école primaire et le collège et de restaurer le terrain du saut en hauteur du collège. L’achat de don se passait en coopération avec les organisations qui s’occupaient de mon séjour (Hope Foundation, Berlin et Webdev Foundation, Yaoundé).

La vie quotidienne ? Je l’aimais beaucoup parce qu’on passe beaucoup plus du temps avec sa famille (il n’y pas l’entrainement, les cours de musique, les rendez-vous avec les amis etc.…). Déjà l’heure de se lever et de se coucher est décalée, on se lève beaucoup plus tôt, vers 6h et on se couche vers 21h. Laver la lessive et les chaussures avec les mains, faire la cuisine sur le feu du bois, cultiver les champs (j’ai eu cinq ampoules ! 😀 ), prendre la douche avec le sceau, aller chercher de l’eau, avoir toujours une torche avec soi au cas de coupure…Les dimanches on va à l’église qui prend trois heures et je n’aurais jamais pu imaginer comment les Africaines sont croyants (Merci Tata Trésor). Ils rendent la grâce au Seigneur.

Après les deux mois je devais dire au revoir à mes sœurs Jojo et Manu, à Maman Jacky, à Billy et Trésor. Dire aux revoir à mes enfants en savant que je ne vais peut-être jamais les revoir, ca fait du mal…

Merci à vous, Clotaire et Bobga, pour l’organisation !!

Linda Koenigsmann, Allemagne. Volontaire 2013

Tanja Aumer (Germany) 2013

Tanja Aumer (Germany) 2013

tanjaDespite of some difficulties, it was interesting to see how a NGO in Africa is working and I learnt to learn out of my mistakes and mistakes of others. So I see it nevertheless positive as an experience where one can learn from. I also think that everyone did a lot of efforts for the project and everyone tried to give the best.
Tanja Aumer (Germany) 2013

Robert Hör (Germany) 2013

Robert Hör (Germany) 2013

P1060268The first days we spent at the school were used to deliver the same sessions like in the orphanage. In workshops adapted to the classes we implemented them. Afterwards we split us up. Everyone had one class to teach a language.

I had the oldest children and tried to deliver them the German language. Therefore the teachers made us two hours available. So we spent Monday, Wednesday and Friday in school. Although was the Wednesday an exception because on Wednesday there was always the sport day. During the sport day we delivered German games like “British bulldog one two three” or “Völkerball”.

In addition we spent every day in school around 30 minutes to play with the children of the “ecole maternelle”. I taught them some easy songs. At the end of our time there was a big closing ceremony. During this ceremony we showed the parents what we taught the children. For example sang my children a German song and spoke some dialogues about the basics of a language.

During the four weeks I taught them how to greet, to speak about their feelings, to count, the fruits, how to say where they live and the family structure. Grammatically I explained them the present conjugation of verbs ending in –er and some irregular verbs.

Furthermore the children showed us traditional dances and dresses during the ceremony. Finished by warm words of saying thank you and self-painted pictures we closed our project in the school with a common traditional lunch.

Robert Hör (Germany) 2013

Ana De La Barra (Brazil) 2013

Ana De La Barra (Brazil) 2013

anaMy personal goal was to have an impact on the children, teach them subjects that would be usefull and inspire them. Also encourage them to be curious and interested in the world different cultures, news and information, but mostly to study, that way they can change their life for better, to be ambitious and think big. I also wanted to see the real life in Africa and visit the country that is known for being Africa in miniature.

On Monday and Friday mornings we gave health, language and culture sessions in the school (my sessions in particular were washing hands and brushing teeth), assisted the teachers in everything they needed and played with the kids during break. On Wednesdays mornings we successful implemented the sports day at school, a day in which we danced and played different sports with the pupils.

On Tuesdays and Thursday mornings we worked in the administrative part of the ngo, mostly planning the next project, the Summer Project 2013, designing booklets and dropping letters for possible sponsors.

Every working day from 17h to 19h we were at the orphanage, either delivering sessions or playing with the children. Until the 3rd week of the project we only went to one orphanage but on the last two weeks we worked also on a second orphanage (every Wednesday and Friday afternoon and Saturday morning), so on Wednesday and Friday we splited the team in 2 in order to go to both orphanages.

Ana De La Barra (Brazil) 2013

Rosa Willock (UK) 2012

Rosa Willock (UK) 2012

My expectations of the project

rosaIf I am honest my expectations of the project were quite naive. I had travelled alot before and I think I expected the project to be like my previous experience. I did not consider the working aspect of the internship at all. I applied to come on the project to meet people from different countries and experience a completly differenet culture. I wanted to give myself a personal challenge to see how I would cope lving a very basic lifestyle, far away from home for such a long time! After speaking to Sarah I thought I knew what my expectaions should be as I beleived our experiences would be similar.

My experience

My experience of the project was defintly nothing like what I had expected. I beleive it has been a once in a lifetime experience because never again will I be in the same place at the same time with the same people. I have learnt so much whilst being here that I hope will help me alot in my life. I have enjoyed meeting so many people. The main thing I will miss about African culture is that everyone is genuinly friendly and welcoming even to strangers they meet on the street! I have enjoyed learning lots about the country and the culture which I think is only possible if you live in one place for a long time and interact so closely with local people.

I have learnt a lot from being here. The most important thing I will take from this experience is that sometimes in life you have to get along with the job you have been given even if it is daughting or difficult or unfair. This experience has forced me to overcome the view that somebody else will always be there to do it for you if you think a task is too difficult. At the beginning I defintly tried to do the same espcially when faced with teaching a class of children in a language I didn’t understand! However the challenge was defintly a good thing because I am proud of some things I have accomplished here which I would have avoided attempting if I had been given the chance. For example after my first session in Banguoa I never would have thought I would be able to teach three hours of class alone to frenchh speakers but I managed to by the end! In terms of practical skills I have learnt how to talk in front of a group of people without feeling terrified and that I must speak much slower and clearer when talking to a group of people. I have learnt about the kind of management style I have when given the oppertunity. Being team leader for English was a challenge because I found it difficullt to order people I consider friends to do things but I have learnt that if the ultimate reponsibility for the task falls to you you have to do everything possible to make sure it is completed.

Rosa Willock, from UK, Volunteer 2012 for Summer Project