Dear Friends of the Azawak,
I am writing you from Niamey, where the Amman Imman team is making final preparations before heading up to the Azawak during the construction phase next month. The team will be responsible for two major tasks: 1) supervising construction; and 2) strengthening the water source management committee through training sessions in various arenas including proper financial and environmental management, good governance, hygiene and sanitation, etc. If all goes according to schedule, construction and training should be completed by the end of June/beginning of July. Denis will be travelling up with the contractors for a few days this week to conduct initial construction operations.
As I wrote you in my last update, I have been working for the past couple of weeks on a proposal for large international organizations. I have completed the proposal and am now in the process of discussing this proposal with various agencies to determine how we might be able to work together towards the same goals for the Azawak. This whole process has taken a great deal more time than I anticipated, and things are not as clear or straightforward as I hoped they would be at this point, but I do promise to keep you posted.
Work here this past month has been a struggle as we've been caught between an overbearing workload and administrative hurdles, which have both been compounded by unbearable heat (over 115 F°). The Amman Imman team is therefore particularly grateful to have received the steady support, advice, and encouragement of several experts, including my dear friends Aichatou and Ali Betty, Tony Minaise, and the well known and respected German hydro-geologist, Mr. Gerhart Saltzmann, who has been working in Africa for the past 40 years and knows just about everything there is to know about water projects in this part of Africa. Additionally, the Rotary clubs of Niger, particularly members Gaston Kaba and Sidi Mamane, continue to be a huge source of help.
Much much thanks to all of you in America and France that continue to support the project through your various activities and efforts. Please visit the Montessori blog to read about students' participation in "A Walk for Water" and "A Month without Water". The energy and good will achieved through these endeavours has been amazing. Thank you!!
Please keep us all in your thoughts and prayers!
Yours in peace,