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EU Aid Volunteer – Small holder farmers’ Economic Advisor. March – September 2022

1. Age 25

2. Profession Fresh out of university! I hold a Master’s degree in International Cooperation and Economics for Development

3. For how long time have you volunteered in Shianda? 2 months

4. Why did you decide to go to Kenya? I found that the call really matched my studies, so I took the opportunity

5. Why did you decide to volunteer with WEFOCO? Same us in the previous question! I mainly did it because of the position, but I also found it interesting that there was a local NGO dealing with such matters.

6. What do you think about the work that is being done by WEFOCO? I think the organization is doing a great job, not only because I see it, but I say this for all the positive feedback that I receive from the beneficiaries.

8. What did you like the most about volunteering? I have been volunteering for years in several projects and what I like the most is the fact that I am a new version of myself after each and every experience.

7. What kind of tasks do you have? My objective is to help farmers increase their incomes. To do so, I am following up on previous projects, like the one in poultry which is meant to give farmers the opportunity to breed chickens and sell chicks and eggs. Moreover, I have recently started a new project in vertical bags to allow groups that do not have much land to cultivate vegetables alongside with maize and beans.

9. What was surprising? People prefer to have their beer warm

10. What kind of additional information would you have liked to know before going to Kenya? I would have liked to know that the better time to join WEFOCO is right before its monthly meeting (the 6th of each month) in order to get to know the groups as soon as possible. Also, the best phone company in Shianda is Safaricom, some others do not work here.

11. For what kind of difficulties the new volunteers should prepare themselves for? 1) Totally different lifestyle. You do not go out after it gets dark, you just stay home and try to enjoy your peace. Plus, people can get up very early in the morning and make a lot of noise, even on Sundays at 6 a.m. sharp

2) No washing machine, but you get used to it quite easily

12. Tell about your favourite experience from Kenya. Up to date, the best experience has been visiting the rainforest in Kakamega and climbing up to a hill in the middle of the forrest to see the landscape. It was a very peaceful place. However, more experiences are about to come, I have 4 months left here.

13. Do you miss something from Kenya/Shianda? Not yet

14. Any other comments? Change your European pace to the local one, and eat healthy and exercise to feel good with yourself.