Reflections on the Directors' Trip

At our last Board of Directors meeting we were reflecting on the Directors’ trip in March, and we wanted to share some of our reflections with you.

Two moments stand out for me in particular: Meeting with the representatives of the women’s collectives and Cecelia (the beading trainer), and seeing the improvement in the beadwork reaffirmed for me the importance of the training FoTZC has funded. On my first trip five years ago, the women were making simple three-strand bracelets and necklaces. Since receiving training there has been significant improvement in the quality and variety of the beadwork. Additionally, the collective training has enabled women from different villages to come together and talk about priorities to benefit the region, such as the dispensary, not just their individual communities. Meeting with students and teachers at Soit Sambu Secondary School and touring the new girls’ dormitory was equally moving. The new dormitory positively sparkled with its bright colors. I was particularly struck by the headmaster’s statement that the younger girls are housed in the new dorm to encourage them to stay in school. These students are eager to learn, and with our help they have facilities that make it easier to continue their studies. – Lucy Karl

What most affected me on this Directors’ trip was the extent of interaction we had with community representatives – honest and open feedback on what impact our projects were having, and the unanimity of the most important efforts we could assist with going forward. It’s instructive to sit down outside with dozens of Maasai women, or in a classroom with fifty village representatives, and listen to their opinions, stories, and insight. – Bob Treitman