As you may have read back in June, I have a second school in mind for a dose of books. The village is called Selpele and I visited it in October last year. At the time there were no teachers on the island so I was unable to talk to them about their needs or see what resources they had available to them. More recently Nathan has spoken to the head of the village who said they would be very appreciative of books, and I have gotten to know the area a bit more and have gathered that books will be a valuable resource and warmly appreciated anywhere in the archipelago. So on Tuesday just gone I hitched a ride on the company boat (it was market day) and went, loaded with stationary, to visit the school and talk to the teachers about what they have and what they need most.
Mother nature, who has been pounding us with rain and big swell for weeks, really turned it on for us and we had glorious weather for the trip. Blue skies and calm seas are a far better start to ocean adventures in my book!
When we arrived at the village I asked immediately if I could see the school and was sent with a chaperone to do so. I was disappointed, and somewhat surprised, to see the school empty. Once again the teachers were "still on holidays" and the school looked barren and uncared for. My chaperone, a lovely older, local man, had a key to the buildings though so I was still able to take a peek at their "library" (a book shelf in the office) and see what they had in the classrooms (a world map and that's it).
I had hoped to talk to the teachers about what they already have and what they most need before preparing the donated books for distribution but it was not to be. I did have the opportunity, thought, to talk to some of the locals and it sounds like I'm on the right track with what I've purchased so far. I think we're going to have lots of happy families.
Next week distribution begins, you guys! Stay Tuned!