Sunday, August 21, 2016

Tia's Madagascar trip (and a little catch up).

 We've had a busy couple of months. Tia did one last fundraiser to help her get to Madagascar. She also did a fabric drive for the humanitarian side of her trip. With help from many of you, and her job hours, she was able to earn the full amount to pay her own way for this Youthlinc trip. She got a late start compared to most of the other kids, so didn't get any help from their group fundraisers. She also got a late start on the required community service hours, but finished the full 80 hours --including running a Red Cross blood drive. I am very very proud of her for her efforts. 

 Also proud of this guy. He "graduated" and is starting Junior high this next week.

 I missed posting about Ari's birthday, which was a bit of a bummer with her on crutches (she tore her ACl and had to have surgery). Ari had a hard month. She finished the last weeks of school getting knocked around the halls by the other kids trying to use those crutches.
 And then we had Tia's graduation from High School  with High Honors.

 Kai had a birthday --complete with Raspberry ice cream cake.
 And Jeff and I did the Utah Valley Parade of Homes. I was just going to skip posting about that this year, but I still may go back and do one. SO many beautiful things to see (and I took a ton of pictures).
 But the big deal for the end of June/beginning of July was that Tia was gone on her humanitarian trip. I'm going to put a few of the 500+ pictures she has on here, but I'm not going to do much commentary. This is in the village's small existing school. It was too small for all of the kids they have, so Tia's group began building a new one for them. They also taught English lessons, hygiene lessons, built square foot gardens, assembled treadle sewing machines, and taught sewing (using donated fabric), They did small business education (with micro loans), and did a "Days for Girls" project. They also fell in love with some beautiful children and cuddled some lemurs!

 Tia teaching her lesson.

 These were the cottages they stayed in.
 Inside they were pretty nice.

 Some of the humanitarian donations they brought down. Each of the 40 kids carried a military sized duffel bag full of supplies.
 More donations. 

 Cassava field.

 Square foot garden boxes they constructed. They also brought down donated seeds and taught classes.

 I told Tia to take pictures of what she ate. Most of the time she said it looked like this: meat and rice.

 But there was fruit at breakfast.
 and some other fun stuff to try.

  Days for Girls project. Tia was impressed that the dads and brothers got involved in helping with this too.

 Village well.

 Rice fields.

  Bamboo grove.



 This was a small business --weaving --owned by this woman. Part of the group came to visit her, and 7 of the girls including Tia, bought a dress from her in advance--creating a micro loan for the woman. They then talked to her about selling direct in the market, and some other strategies she can use.

 These treadle machines look so much like my great grandmother's machine. 

 Square foot boxes finished. 

 This is the group building the school. They started by clearing the land, then sifting the dirt to use to create bricks. This was really from scratch! They had some sort of powder to mix with the dirt and village well water to make each brick. 

 They ended up finishing all of the walls while Tia was there, and the next group finished the school. These guys worked hard!

 Most of the local buildings were made from the same red clay. 
 Inside a local home.


 She had a great time, but was exhausted by the time she got home.