Selam! That means hi in Amharic, the main language here in Addis. I have arrived safe and well and have already completed one week of training with the teachers here. We are working from the Camara workshop and training room in the city and each week a group of  teachers attend the classes and learn from us about using computers in their schools. Once they have received this training, they can take delivery of 25 refurbished computers which have been checked here in the workshop. All these computers came from companies and schools such as St. Edward’s originally.

There was great excitement last Monday when the principal of the first school took delivery of his computers. You can see us in the picture with him beside his delivery truck. The workshop is very new here so they had their official opening on Friday. Officals from the Irish Embassy and the Ministry of Education came to mark the occasion along with the volunteers in the Hub. Maybe you can see a computer from St. Edward’s in the background!

It is rainy season here so it usually rains for an hour or so each day, sometimes even with very big hailstones! In between showers it is warm but comfortable. There is a good choice of food. The main local dish is Injera which looks like a giant pancake with a spicy meat sauce in the centre. It is large so it is usually shared between a number of people. We use our hands to pull away a piece of the injera and mop up some of the sauce with it. It’s very tasty! Most restaurants and cafes also sell pizza, pasta, rice, sandwhiches etc so I always have a great choice. The people are very friendly and always greet you with a wide smile and a handshake. We are shaking a lot of hands!

All of the volunteers and staff keeping reminding me to tell all the pupils and staff of St. Edwards that they want to say a big “Thank You” to everybody in the school for donating old computers. They are very grateful and it makes a big difference to them, so THANK YOU!

I am really enjoying my time here which is really flying past and  I will be very sorry to leave.Volunteering in Africa is proving to be a very rewarding experience!

Ms. Grimes