My stay at the Farmer Training Centre (FTC) – during my time as a volunteer at SAT, I spent a few nights there, and it was terrific. I loved how excellent and friendly the staff was (and, of course, still is 😉 ). Everybody showed me around, helped me out and wanted to make my stay memorable. Not forgetting the excellent food which two wonderful mamas cooked. Angelina, one of the staff working at the farm, gave me a brief tour of the water cycle, although her time was limited.
The water, which was used for washing hands and showering, is collected in a little basin. This basin has rocks and grass on it, which separates rubbish from water. The next basin has elephant grass, which filters some chemicals, like heavy metals, out of the water. Now the water is fully filtered and can be used to water the plants and trees on the farm. I was impressed by this simple system of reusing water.
At the FTC, I attended the course Natural Medicine, held by Dr Feleshi. He is a Tanzanian Ambassador for ANAMED (Action for Natural Medicine in the Tropics). This international Christian Organisation promotes responsible, sustainable and universally accessible health and nutrition.
Dr Feleshi is an inspiring person and shared a lot of experiences and stories with the participants. The practical part was done by the participants and as a team. This engaging learning method was very useful in strengthening the learned theory and removing the inhibition of trying it alone at home. He explained the topics and tasks very well and had no problem telling them over and over again until everybody understood.
In my free time, I loved to stroll through the various demonstration plots and gardens, where I tried to identify the multiple species planted next to each other for a positive interplay.
The two newly bought cows still needed a name, so one cow was named after me. As you can imagine, I had to visit my cow buddy multiple times a day. On my way to her, I checked on the other animals as well: goats, chickens, cattle and donkeys, as well as pigs.
I only realized how many people live at the FTC when it is time to eat or when a soccer game is on. Then they all gathered in front of the TV for a game, and as soon as the match was over, they scattered around the FTC again. This little community lives as one big family. Everyone smiles, greets and is helpful, regardless of co-worker or participant. For me, the place is magic. It is calm and, at the same time, alive, it is quiet, but you always find somebody to chat with; it is peaceful and inspiring. I will never forget my time at the FTC. Thank you, Angelina, for making it possible.
This is a featured post by Marie Louise, a volunteer at SAT.