Our recent trip again highlights the plight of this forgotten country and its youth. Images and perceptions in are complex, even more complex when viewed from our US base. By traveling to the DRC we sought to validate our perceptions of the school and orphanage operated by our partner PAID in the surrounding Mpasa II community as the site for our youth empowerment curriculum and development projects.
The main image I have from this trip was the affirmation of our process, refined with our new board members, of strengthening our partnership with PAID and implementing a community based development program. It is hard to prepare a mode of evaluation for a project this complex but the time spent designing a culturally sensitive yet incisive plan was very effective. It opened a new level of understanding and dialogue between GBA and the PAID staff. We all feel more secure of our process while still being realistic about the difficulties.
And the statistics from the previous post highlight the importance of strong partnerships. They are on display every minute in every corner of Congo yet the people maintain an incredible spirit and vitality and life pulses every second.