PCV 8 February 2010

Brief Project Description:

On Monday, March 8th 2010 about 100 women and young girls, community health care workers, volunteers, a musician, and the NGO Pink Benin will celebrate International Women’s Day. This year’s theme is called Opportunities and Investing in Women. The keynote speaker from Pink Benin will raise awareness about breast cancer and provide free examinations. Discussing tips on how to start a business and craft making are other presentations given by volunteers. A music/dance group will perform as well to commemorate the day.

Dates of Project: March 7th and 8th
Number of People Involved: About 100 women participants, plus young girls and children who might follow the days events, 8 Pink Benin (2 representatives, 2 health workers, 2 camera crews, Music Group of 5,Volunteers 3.
Budget:

Item Number Cost
Music Group 1 (for the whole day) 5.000 CFA
Fish 1 kilo 5.000 CFA
Bread 50 loaves 5.500 CFA
Beesap Juice 12 gallons 5.000 CFA
Clear roll tape Dozen 1.000 CFA
Zippers 20 1.000 CFA
Needles 25 700 CFA
Thread One Spool 1.000 CFA
Photocopies 60 1.300 CFA
Total Cost 25.000 CFA

Amount Requested: 25.000 CFA

Feedback:
Always begin planning way in advance, even things you think are minor details that you know are available. Keep our receipt book with you at all times just in case you find items unexpectedly at a lower price.

Comments

GAD Coordinator: This sounds like a good project but I’d like more information. Where is the event being held and how will the women find out about it? I’m assuming the food is to prepare meals but who is doing that and how does it fit into the program? And the tape, needles, and thread I’m assuming are for craft projects, but which ones? Glad to see she’s working with Pink though. If questions are answered recommend funding.
GAD Finance: It is good to see a project about raising the awareness of breast cancer. I wish she could have detailed a more thorough program of the event. She should remember to report the ages of the participants in the Activity Report. Recommend funding.
GAD Specialist: I agree with both of you. More clarification is needed. Recommend funding.

Closing Report

Brief Project Description:
On March 8th 2010 at the Centre de Promotion Sociale; Pink Benin (a non governmental organization), a delegation from the mayor’s office, and invited guests commemorated International Women’s Day. Declaring the ceremony open, the Sergeant General of the mayor’s office welcomed all women from the commune announcing that the theme of the day’s events were, “Healthy Women Build Strong Communities!” Following the opening, facilitation of the day was led by the director of the CPS. She greeted everyone and heart fully expressed her gratitude saying that, “There are women in attendance to participate in the day’s events and who can also benefit from other CPS services”.

The quickest speech and health prevention awareness message was given by Pink Benin’s sage femme. Engaging the women to seek free breast cancer screenings that day, and teaching them how to conduct self examinations, Pink Benin staff were able to serve a diverse age group of women. Participants whose results yielded positive outcomes for breast cancer were provided with further information and the opportunity for free mammograms. Additional incentives Pink Benin gave for examination included posters about self screening and counseling services if necessary.

Four Peace Corps volunteers from Small Micro-Enterprise Development, Rural Community Health, and Environment sectors added their expertise and enthusiasm to the celebration; thereby, conducting a moringa and a saving and loan workshops. With encouragement from a community health relay, the women began to dance and sing. The Handicap Coordinator of the CPS continued to carryout the spirit of International Women’s Day acting as a master of ceremonies for the afternoon presentations, which unfortunately ended early. You can never know when the electricity will be cut off, but the camera men were sure to catch every moment.

Both ORTB and Golfe News played a five minute special for one week on national TV. A group of women and even a 12 year old girl came to the CPS office and the home of my homologue asking for us to examine them. We referred them to the Cové hospital; furthermore, making vibrations because, the Cové Centre de Promotion Sociale’s Director contacted us asking if we could recreate the same events at their location.
Other real rewards and manifestations of International Women’s Day came after the event. Grumbles of men demanding why this day should exist have led young males in the town to discuss their roles in family and community. In response I’ve challenged them to organize themselves to observe their strengths and call on support for things they’d like to know more about. During an interview from Golfe TV I was asked why I organized such an occasion. In retrospect, a more polished response would have been that, “ I am a Peace Corps volunteer in the health domain, and with this charge, I felt compelled to capture for one day, women’s current status economically and physically; henceforth, spreading information, empowering women, and enabling growth in Benin!”

Dates of Project: March 8, 2010
Number of People Involved:
Male SED volunteer 23
Male Community Health Relay 50
Male CPS Handicap Coordinator 29
Male NGO Moringa Director 40’s
Male DJ30’s
3 male Camera Men in early 20’s
2 men from the mayors office 40’s
female from mayors office 48
Community Health Relay 60
Female CPS director 30’s
Midwife 35
Pink Benin Community Program Coordinator 29
4 female Peace Corps volunteers 20’s
5 female students plus 2 women helped set up teens

Goals of Project:

  • Participants were able to cite 2 methods of prevention/strategies to increase healthy living
  • Identify 2 services of the social service center (CPS) for women
  • Name two tips you can use to start and maintain a business

All objectives were met accept identifying others services of the center and unfortunately due to the electricity being cut some women left early and did not get examined.

Strengths of Project:

  • Giving access to free breast cancer screenings and education
  • Learning about the Beninese code of law for women and family

Challenges of Project:

  • Communication and logistics of staff availability
  • Having a plan B for power outages
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