Students lining up after recess before heading back into classrooms.

Students lining up after recess before heading back into classrooms.

On Tuesday, we had a great meeting with two of the directors of MPP, Verona Val and Michel Mulaire.  The focus of the conversation was on the sustainability of the school.  Mulaire starting by talking about how MPP got involved with the school.  He explained that building and operating a school is not what MPP does.  Schools are complex and have their own special requirements.  But the directors of MPP decided to take on this challenge in their continuing efforts to help the refugees of the earthquake.  He said that no matter what the government does, MPP will  always be involved in this school.

This was a great relief to our group because we are concerned about the future of the school once we stop providing financial support.  MPP knows that our financial contribution goes away in 3 years and they are very appreciative of our continued support beyond our initial 5 year mission.

So that led to the subject of the sources of income for operating the school going forward.  We asked about the agricultural initiatives.  We have contributed a lot of money to buy goats, plant manioc and plant moringa.   But these have not produced any income.  To which Verona replied, "You are correct that we haven't seen any income … Yet!"

It seems that manioc takes a minimum of 18 months before it can be harvested.  Moringa likewise can take a couple of years before producing significant yield.  Offspring of goats are being giving to families who have not yet  received a goat.  The drought has delayed progress.  Those of us in America are impatient for our return on investment.  But, these projects were funded two years ago and it's too soon to be expecting results.

We are comforted by MPP's confidence that, in time, these project will result in income to support the villages and the school.

by C. Calia