Reporting from Belgian ground

After quite a lengthy trip back to Belgium, we arrived on Sunday afternoon and headed back to work on Monday. Yesterday we also finalized our reporting to marketing and took part in a follow-up meeting in order to provide our feedback about this experience.

We would like to wholeheartedly thank all of you who have been with us through this journey either by reading our blog, answering our quiz or liking our posts on Facebook & Yammer. It meant a great deal to us to have your support and, truth be told, we put quite some effort into providing you with a continuous status update on our activities.

Last but not least, these are the final winners of our quizzes. Congratulations and, hold tight, gifts are coming your way 😉
• Clotilde della Faille de Leverghem
• Harold Allaeys
• Laetitia Sacré
• Kristel De Beir
• Martin Coquery

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Habari Gani? (Soon to be PROs in Swahili)

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We are doing well. Before starting this post, we want to thank you for participating in our quiz, please check out our new quiz questions of today (you can find it via: https://deloittebe-marketing.polldaddy.com/s/tanzania-2014-01).

Yesterday we gave our firsts trainings! The first day of trainings started by dividing the team into two groups: Cliff & Klaas teaching the students at Buhare school and Diana, Ivan & Seb teaching the NGOs on the Anglican Church premises.

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The NGOs group consists of 10 organizations, 2 participants per NGO. Our teaching session started with an introduction of the participants, the project and ourselves. Although we were prepared to teach in English, we realized that we would also have to use Swahili as many of our participants could not speak English. Obviously, we were not novices in Swahili, since we had already learned a few words during our stay. In the end, we were lucky to have Theophile, the director of the Anglican Church, to back us up as a translator.

During the first day, we focused our training on Microsoft Word as it is the most straightforward Office product and a good basis for the courses on other Office applications. The approach was to use practical exercises in parallel with live demos. Flexible to the needs of our participants, we adapted our material to the fact that some of them had never used a computer before. After teaching the very basics, such as how to use a touchpad or write a capital letter, we finally started the Word training. The training quickly gained momentum. Indeed, our students despite being totally novices were eager to learn and, by the end of the day, they all were able to create a basic Word document, using various formatting, titles, colors, bullet points and, some, even pictures.

On the second day, we shifted to Excel as many of the participants had expressed their interest in finding out more about record keeping and data consolidation. The approach was similar as for Word, as we continuously combined live demos with practical exercises. We immediately noticed that the effort we had put in teaching them Word paid off during the training on Excel. Our students were able to apply by themselves the functionalities of Excel that are similar in Word (size of the text, font, color…).

 Collage students

The student group is taught by Klaas and Cliff at Buhare School. You would think that school starts at 9am sharp, but in Africa they don’t worry too much about time, hakuna matata, you know…

We expected to teach 20 students but when we arrived at the campus, 31 students were waiting for us. To get to know our audience for the coming days, we started with a meet and greet session.   Afterwards, we kicked off with a basic Windows training followed by a security awareness session. Continuing with a short introduction in hardware and computer components, we trained them how to navigate in Microsoft Windows. What immediately caught our attention was the big difference in knowledge between our students, which created a big challenge in keeping the group together.

During the first break, we finally got the chance to bond with our students. Unlike in Belgium breaks in Buhari School are not used to check your emails but to play games and make fun.

The second day we started with the Microsoft Office Excel training. Our students were eager to learn about how to make calculations and use functions in Excel. After starting from a basic introduction training, we ended up with making pivots and charts. We were surprised to see how fast our students picked up this knowledge.

We will keep you posted on the evolution of our students and our work.

Karibu Musoma

Good evening from Musoma!! Happy to report that we made it safe and sound. After leaving Brussels at 11am on Thursday, we finally got to Musoma at 4pm the next day. First layover was in Doha (Qatar) where we arrived at 7pm and left at 1:45am. Here we got the chance to experience the Arab and European culture blend and to enjoy our first group dinner. After sleeping throughout the flight to Nairobi (Kenya) we arrived in the Nairobi airport at 6:30am to board on our final flight to Mwanza (Tanzania). This was still not our final destination as from Mwanza we had another 4 hrs to go by minivan to Musoma.

Collage trip

Once in Musoma, we first went to visit the headquarters of Global Resource Alliance (GRA) where we were welcomed by our project partners. GRA is the NGO collaborating with Deloitte since 2011 / 2012. GRA is responsible for the day-to-day operations of Tanzania’s water, permaculture, solar cooking, orphans care and natural medicine programs.

At around 5pm we were able to check in at our hotel, Afrilux. Once unpacked, Benoit, already experienced with Musoma, took us for a short tour around the city, stopping shortly at the nearby beach and at the local market, leaving us with no doubt that we were in “authentic” Africa.

Market

On Saturday, after a well-deserved sleep, we did another tour of the market, this time getting the chance to admire the wonderful fruits & vegetables and the hand-made clothes & accessories. After lunch, we departed by boat to Lukuba Island, a wonderful peaceful place in the Lake Victoria, the second biggest lake in the world. Lake Victoria borders Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, its surface is of 68 800 km2 (= more than two times the size of Belgium) and it is at an altitude of 1 133 m above sea level.

During the time spent on the island, we got the chance to bond as a team and to get fully recharged for the upcoming 2 weeks of training.

Group rock

As of tomorrow, we will start our teaching of the students and NGOs. Although we have been preparing this trip for months and we believe that we are ready, we are anxious to see what we can achieve. Therefore, please follow our blog in the coming days.
Don’t forget about our quizzes, you can find the second question at the following link: Quiz question # 2

Departure in 10 hrs

1:04: luggage finally done and all set for departure at 11:00. Among the 30kg checked-in luggage + 10kg hand luggage, about 6 to 10 kg consist of materials that we have collected especially for our hosting university: Deloitte pens, pencils, markers, flipcharts & training materials.

Looking forward to some team bonding during our three connecting flights till Musoma.

Click on the following link to join our quiz in order to support us and win some nice prizes: Quiz Tanzania project 2014

+ 3 (&3) more and we’re complete

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Sebi

As promised, time to meet my other 3 lovely colleagues. Nevertheless, before introducing them, you should also meet Benoit Vanderstichelen, Ivan Meganck and Claire Van Bergen who, despite not being on the posters that you have probably already spotted around Diegem, have been supporting us from the very beginning. In fact, without them this project would not exist. So, thank you for giving us this chance and for your continuous help during the preparation for this trip!!

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Once upon a time..

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..There were 6 colleagues who found out that they would get the chance to work together for the Tanzania volunteering project. It didn’t take them long to get to know each other and to become friends. Today, we would also like you to meet 3 of them (alphabetically chosen for fairness reasons). Tomorrow, we’ll introduce the other 3.

We’ll let you try to match the faces behind the intros.

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Tanzania Project 2014: 14 August – T-8 !!

Hip hip hooray, it’s almost time for departure to Tanzania!! Though the trip will only start on August 14th (with actual arrival on August 15th), the project and the preparations have been going on for quite some time now and should come to an end this week. For this year’s project, we will travel to Tanzania for two weeks to:

  • provide workshops to several NGOs seeking to maximise funding opportunities & to better promote themselves;
  • help teachers and university students to develop their IT skills through a series of business cases;
  • audit “Exponential Technologies” (a start-up created last year);
  • raising funds to buy solar panels for a recently built school.

We have almost finalized the materials for the students, the NGOs and the Anglican Church trainings. Our IT guys (Klaas and Maxime) spent one weekend getting the refurbished laptops nice and ready for being reused by the university. The laptops are also taking their private jet trip, waiting to arrive safely and comfortably to their future home in Tanzania.

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We hope that you tasted our delicious Tanzanian sandwiches in the cafeteria. We were also happy to see that you were enjoying our traditional BBQ today and we thank you for that.

Collage BBQ