On our way, almost

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It’s real, and it’s just around the corner.

Thanks to the generous contributions of over 50 of you, Encore de la Paix is moving close to our goal of completing our first project, the renovation of a primary school built by Peace Corps in 1965 in the village of Doumandzou, Gabon. It’s been a long journey, but in less than two weeks, on January 9th, the first group of us will arrive in the village to work side-by-side with volunteers from Doumandzou in making repairs to the school and to the school’s teachers’ houses.

The first contingent from outside Gabon numbers five, and includes Drew Howard and Claire Thiebault from San Francisco, Henk Brouwer from Woerden, Netherlands and Mary and John Dickson from Pittsfield, Massachusetts. With the efforts of Bob Weisflog in Libreville, many of the materials purchased with your donations have already arrived in Doumandzou. In making all the preparations, Bob has worked closely with Gaston Biyogo, an advisor in the Ministry of Health who grew up in the village. Several villagers have agreed to house us once we arrive, and they have identified a local contractor to serve as our construction foreman. Expect photos of all these people once we are on the ground.

We are excited, and especially so with the support of those Peace Corps volunteers who built the school 50 years ago.

I close with these photos from Jerry Anderson, who took these while the school was under construction.

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