Category: Senegal 2019-20

  • Back in America

    Back in America

    Time is an interesting thing, especially when considering an experience like our trip to Senegal.  Sometimes, it feels like there simply isn’t enough of it.  An infinity of potential can seem constrained by the finite.  We definitely experienced that during our 9 days in West Africa.  During the same trip, though, time also felt immeasurably…

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  • Misplaced Skepticism

    Misplaced Skepticism

    By Jack Butcher I was skeptical about the village at first. It certainly wasn’t my suburban home. After spending a little time in Kekuota’s home I realized that the people of the village are happy even though they don’t have a lot of material things, or electricity. It’s not that they just don’t have iPhones,…

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  • Contradicting Feelings

    Contradicting Feelings

    By Zach Magnuson I have experienced very different strong feelings on this trip. First, when we arrived and went to Alter’s friend’s house, I looked out the window and observed many people. I started to feel bad. I perceived poverty, trash, and disease. There was a kid on a wheelchair that was so excited to…

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  • Thoughts on Tostan

    Thoughts on Tostan

    At the end of the presentation, Godfrey asked us to share a word or a thought that captured the program: ‘Smart’ – Zach ‘Clever – the way the system works’ – Connor ‘Passionate – people who care about what they do and the results.’ – Azalia ‘Shocked – didn’t know about these issues in West…

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  • Tostan


    It’s almost sunset here in Dakar and the weather is perfect – a cool 78 with a breeze off the ocean and clear blue skies. Senegal is still embracing us with open arms. We are waiting to eat dinner with Alioune Kebe and his young family. The group is travel weary but still in great…

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  • Connections Make Meaning

    Connections Make Meaning

    By Kobe Scales Connections make meaning, in turn the connections make relationships that if done right last forever. The connections made on international trips are indeed the kind of relationships that will last forever. On this trip we missed Thanksgiving with our families, but should be thankful for the people that made us feel as…

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  • On the way northwest

    On the way northwest

    We are on our way to Dakar and things are good! We have lots to share – look for frequent posts in the next few days. Senegal is amazing!

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  • When friends come from afar…

    When friends come from afar…

    Sally’s Blog post As the round orange sun slowly goes down, many sparkling stars begin to appear in the sky of Senegal. Today was my day to be leader of the day. To be honest, being a leader was tiring and made me feel uneasy. I had to think about other people first and my…

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  • Quick Update – little observations

    Quick Update – little observations

    Amazing stars – Sally’s first shooting star! Sally is proud of crossing the footbridge. Kekouta is the best fisherman – even though he had just a handline and we had expensive gear, he did way better than us. Lots of good food. Mafe, the peanut curry, is our favorite. Lots of friendship. Little kids with…

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  • Joy’s Blog Post

    Waking up at 5am and going on a 7 hour road trip to a place that is like no other nor what I am used to brought me unusual Joy (no pun intended). Whilst on the road we saw a lot of people that seemed so happy even though their area didn’t necessarily look like…

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  • Our Mandinka Home

    Our Mandinka Home

    We drove across the country yesterday, from the coast to the heart of the peanut world. The drive was spectacular- perfect weather, great roads, and lots to observe. We have a lot to share in the coming days. Here in the village, Kekouta and his family have already accepted everyone into the extended family. At…

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  • Appreciating Bandia’s front yard

    Appreciating Bandia’s front yard

    By Jacob Osias Today was my first full day in Senegal. We woke up at about 9:30 and drive to Mr. Alter’s friend, Bandia’s house. His wonderful wives and family took amazing care of us with, I swear to God, the best food ever. We had Senegal’s national dish, Thieboudjenne. A dish of stewed fish,…

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  • Day 1!

    Day 1!

    Our first full day in Senegal is over, though we haven’t all fallen asleep quite yet (this group has a lot of positive energy – right now they’re looking up at the incredible stars!).  It has been a powerful 20 or so hours for the group.  Here’s a quick snapshot of what we’ve done: Eaten…

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  • The journey has begun!

    The journey has begun!

    We are piled in the Christchurch van and on our way to the Richmond International Airport. This is how we’re feeling as we cross the York River. Sally is tired but excited. Joy is just chillin. Mr. Cola, our driver, is feeling jealous. Jack doesn’t know how to feel yet, but he’s aware that he’s…

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  • Learn More About Senegal

    Learn More About Senegal

    Here is some information about the country and the places and people we’ll be visiting: Religion  Senegal has a strong reputation as a tolerant, open place for religious practice. While most people are Muslimthere is also a Christian (primarily Roman Catholic) population as well as villages that adhere to what we broadly call animism.  Religion…

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