Shaking – Helpful – Photography workshop

Wednesday – A shaking experience

Today we’ve been in the field. This means we have been out in the rural area. This means we have been there were the people live from whatever they can get into their stomach. Some of them have some plants in a community garden: potatoes, lettuce, spinach, carrots, onions, peaches. But really it’s very few plants for a whole group of people. They work hard for what we would call a very little garden.

Community garden

The biggest problem is lack of water. It’s a very dry area. Soil is distorted. Another problem is too much livestock result in overgrazing. RuLiv has build an auction place where the rural people can sell their cows. They don’t use their cattle for meat anyways. So in other words the cows are more like a status symbol as a means to get something to eat.

Cow - A status symbol in South Africa

RuLiv is trying to get the people there more organized. They suggest the rural people to set up action groups. That way they can bring in their concerns into even more organized and legal entities. Eventually empowering the people to find ways out of their poverty.

Community trying to sell some handwoven stuff

Women are working out in the field while men are hanging around at home. Unemployment is huge. Some of the guys there seemed drunken.

Women work - Man hang around

We have been welcomed with songs and dances by the women. They tried to sell us some handcrafted ornaments. The prices that they wanted to charge us were incredibly high and inappropriate. You could tell they don’t have experience with pricing.

Traditional dance

People are really friendly. And even though they are so far away from the more civilized world they might live a happier life as some of the people in the shacks in townships near the bigger cities.

Kid on the back

Our way there to Queenstown, Lady Fere and Machubeni has been long and dusty. Driving in the rural area is a „shaking“ experience. We would drive like an hour or two just on a very dusty and stony sand street. Cows, sheeps, goats or even monkeys are showing up on the street.

Township houses

Arriving back home I was so happy and grateful for life that I have been given. I have more than enough. I consider myself being very lucky.

Thursday – Everyone is very helpful

The day before our midterm report. Our team is just wonderful. I can learn so much from them. Each of us brings in a wealth of experiences and skills and everyone is happy to share and contribute as much as possible. Also I get help from some of my colleagues at home. Thank You Daniela, Frederick and Michael.

The pains in my neck started to get worse. Melissa showed me a daily workout that will improve my neck muscles. I want to record the exercise because it is so helpful. Thanks Melissa.

Friday – Presentation day

RuLiv has been very happy with our midterm report. I feel they appreciate our work and try to use their time with us IBMers as much as possible.

In fact most of the employees of RuLiv including the management team have participated our project management workshop and photography workshop. Even the Prof (CEO) has been with us all day and continued to contribute his smart questions and thoughts.

I have covered the digital photography workshop. I felt the people loved it. Nick (Mgr. of SURUDEC team) has even asked me to run it again. Take a look at the presentation online.

Melissa, thanks for leading through the midterm report. I seriously wished I can speak and write as sophisticated and professional as you do.

Anna, thanks for the great and insightful overview on PM. I can see you are a black belt on lean six sigma. 🙂