Dienstag, 29. Dezember 2009

24. 12. On the way to Dogon country

Manuel went with Stefan to film the mechanics and local recycling metalworkers. There are not so many in Mopti.

I went with Igor to take care of the trash in the streets, but this time I felt a bit sick. Mopti is on islands between the rivers Niger and Bani, who meet there. Around the city there are huge swamps. The city itself is quite touristic and clean, only a few broken ceramic vessels, but as soon as you leave the main streets, you find mountains of trash along the riverbanks and in the swamps. Children are playing there, men build their pirogues, women are cooking and everybody tells us not to take the trash, it is not healthy. Again we found a lot of playing cards, the rest was quite nasty (dead fish, animal skins, plastic…)

On the bridge to the mosque an older woman was sitting between assorted plastic and glass bottles, obviously to sell. She did not want me to take a photograph, so I bought one of the bottles for 100 CFA (approx. 15,- cent) – another dividend for one of our lucky shareholders. The woman smiled satisfied.

Around 4 p.m. we left Mopti to head for the Dogon country. At 6:30 p.m. – oops, we found out, it really is Christmas Eve. We kept driving into the sunset, and arrived at Djeme´s relatives when it got dark. They welcomed us warmly, and we were sitting in front of the house eating with the men, while the 3 wives stayed in the courtyard.

23. 12. Mopti

Yapas Probleme Hotel: spacey, high standard hotel with swimming pool and roof top terrace restaurant, for people with small budget they offer mattresses and mosquito nets on a quiet part of the roof for a low price. 2 of us took mattresses, 2 stayed in the truck, which therefore could stay safely at the watched parking lot of the hotel. We could use the power plugs on the terrace and on the swimming pool, toilets and showers, and there was a fast wifi (for an extra of Eur 3,- for all of us for the whole time of the stay). Chill out and cool down.

Stefan cleaned up our truck, and the women washing cloth outside asked to have a look into our “home”. After the first amazement, they started to laugh, sing and dance in our small “living room” – there ARE Europeans, who can live in such small and simple spaces!

Our devices start to break down, too much dust, shaking and heat. My camera gets problems with storing, and the lens doesn´t always function properly. Igor´s zoom stopped to work properly 1 week ago.

At the beginning I was shooting like crazy, you never know what´s on the picture when the truck is shaking. Now I am happy about anything I get at all.

Manuel has a friend in Mopti, Djeme, who runs an antique shop with beautiful masks, chairs and jewels. His shop is in the big central market hall, so time for us to finally go to the market with our trash.

The original plan was to bargain with people to find out, how much they would buy for our trash, and then give it to them for free, in case they were interested. But now it was serious: we really need money!

Djeme helped us to get in contact with people who might be interested in some of the tools we brought to give away to metalworkers, and some of the better trash donated by friends.

After hours of sitting and bargaining, a group of people came to our Steyr, and Stefan and Manuel started to sell: Eur 1,- for a big CD-presentation plastic, the young entrepreneur was very happy. Mini disc player, Computer, Monitor went quickly. People became greedy and wanted everything they saw – my photo camera, Stefan´s video cam, our clothes… At the end of the day we made almost Eur 200,- altogether - we will make it to Burkina Faso.

At sunset we decided to make a Chrismas card picture and send it to the world.

Samstag, 26. Dezember 2009

FOTOS mopti

pädagogische beschilderungen zum umgang mit müll

metallrecycling auch durch kinderhände
mopti - das venedig afrikas

die große moschee - lehmbau restauriert mit know-how aus deutschland

maggi market

obama spielkarte

please recycle!
eine plastik- und glasrecyclerin

die offenen kanäle in mopti

Mittwoch, 23. Dezember 2009

22. 12. Djeme stopp

Taking a walk through Djeme, the banks of the Niger, the local artisan market. There was a booth selling photo- and video cameras, small cars as well as oversized mosquitos made of old cans. The works are brilliant, and Stefan and Igor could not resist buying. Would be good to sell some more shares to be able to buy recycled products from the metalworkers as well as artisans and artists we meet, but no more new shareholders for the last 2 weeks. The project money we got from our sponsors and shareholders is almost gone, for us this also means: no more luxury of camping sites with electricity and showers…

Then heading for Mopti, non stop full speed (80 km/h maximum, mostly around 50 km/h). Boiling heat as usual, wonderful trees, small villages, not so much trash around.

21. 12. On the road to Mopti

9:00 a.m. getting a taxi to lead us to Modibo Keita, a local social scientist, who had studied in Germany. In the 1990s he started to work on the topic of waste in Bamako, and now he is director of a waste consulting company. They mostly work for international NGOs, now they hope to get a commission from an American company, who wants to burn waste to get electricity. They work out the best way to do it, how to organize the collecting and separating of waste etc. At the moment they work on a concept how to deal with electronic waste, how to repair or dispose old computers etc. “The government does nothing, and there is no support at all”.

At noon we were back on the road for Mopti. Driving in boiling heat, Stefan felt sick. Manuel stopped for a group of people who wanted to go to Djeme, which was about 20 km apart. Arriving there, it was 5 p.m. already, and we decided to stay there.

The man in the group turned out to be a healer, he told Manuel a lot about local healing plants, and he gave us a cola nut. We were invited to dinner and spend the night safely on the street in front of their house. But first we all went to the internet café, were we spent about 3 hours. Stefan did not manage to upload the video to the blog, and while trying, we all could not get workable connection. I started to prepare pix on photoshop while uploading, which took around 15 minutes for a small file.

After the session, we had spent as much money as we would have paid for a dinner for 4 (around eur 9,-), but all my batteries were charged again. Since Bamako, we can not use the electricity from the truck battery any more, our Steyr refused to start. So we depend on external charging possibilities, which is quite problematic with three laptops charging for 4 hours each.

It is getting more and more difficult to get pix on the blog: boiling heat (around 37-40 degrees), no electricity, not internet. We will keep feeding the blog, but we are not always 100% precise and do the research and compare data after returning back home. We also will work on the selection of pictures later on – for the moment we are glad to be able to make it at all.

20. 12. Metall Recycling Cooperative in Bamako, Mali

How much can we get for a wonderful trash-“Rolex”, donated by our colleague Erwin Posarnig? Momo le Magnifique was not sure. No, he preferred to get Eur 10,- for bringing us to the metalworker cooperative, even though his own wristwatch showed the same time since we´ve met.

Momo brought us to the outskirts of town, where the metalworkers have their workshops. About 1000 people work there, collecting old cars etc. to make something new, like the pots and stoves we knew from Nouakchott. The president and vice president charged about Eur 10,- for filming and photos, this was money for the cooperative, and we were glad to support them.

The cooperative was founded in 1991 by “GTZ - Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit GmbH”, an enterprise owned by the German government to support third world aid policy. Now they get no more support, and it is hard to survive. The workers work there every day, morning until night, they eat there, and have their siesta in their workshops. Most of the time they work really hard, you see it on their muscles. Some children start hammering metal at the age of 8, and when they are 12, they are strong workers already. The president hesitated to tell this, children should go to school, of course. Mali is one of the poorest countries in the world, and priority is getting something to eat.

There are lots of women working there, some are cooking, some are collecting and separating plastic waste. The president told us, that many of them also work with metal, but now it is Sunday, so there are not so many women around. A little girl was “playing” with a colourful plastic basin, a second look revealed, that she was washing clothes. Later on I met her playing in a rusted car wreck.

With all their work, they earn just enough money to survive on a very basic level.

Igor exchanged a half-finished watering can for another watch we got from Erwin in Graz, and we bought a few products. There was one artisan, and Stefan bought a crocodile made of iron.

Video 13.12. Nouakchott

GRET ist eine französische NGO die weltweit Umweltprojekte betreibt die von Frauen getragen werden.

Martial Pouret unser Glücksengel, der uns mit seiner netten Freundin Sophie

Unterkunft, Essen sowie Alkohol angedeihen hat lassen.

Martial führte uns durch das Frauen Plastikrecycling Projekt welches er seit einem Monat in Nouakchott betreut.

Diese werden zerhackt und in einer Maschine zerkleinert, von den Frauen gewaschen und zu neuen Produkten zum Oktopusfischen, Sitzbänke, Plastikkacheln.

Nun, viel lässt sich nicht verdienen, aber es ist eine Möglichkeit etwas zu tun

und ein bisschen zu verdienen, nebenbei wird die Umwelt sauberer.

Wir mussten, wie im Video zu sehen, nach getätigtem Interview tanzen,

recht haben Sie da kommen die Europäer Fragen und Fragen und Reden,

wo man auch tanzen kann..........

Video 12.12 6200km

6200km Nouakchott

Nach 2 Tagesreisen durch die Sahara, und dem Sammeln wunderschönener von der Wüste gezeichnete Blechmüll Dividenden erreichen wir Noakchott (1 Million Einwohner).

Mauretanien, ein Land mit der 13 fachen Grösse Österreichs

zählt 2,5 Millionen Einwohner, die Hauptstadt Nouakshott besitzt keine Wasserquelle, das Wasser wird über 200km herangekarrt.

Hassan und Mohamed erklärten uns wie Sie in den Recyclingkommunen,

Menschen über Marketing, Schutzmassnahmen unterrichten und diese vernetzen.

Nach dem Interview mit Hasan und Mohamed, einer ausgiebigen Teezermemonie ging es an die Rundfahrt durch Nouakshotts Recycglingindustrie wie im Video zu sehen.

Aus Aluminium wird in Erdöfen wie scheinbar in vielen Ländern Afrikas eine grosse Palete an Produkten gegossen und verarbeitet.

Wir haben einen Alukochtopf als Dividende gekauft.

Aus Ölfässern entstehen Tiertränken, und Gefässe für Wasser,

Hassan erklärte uns das so mancher Kunde schon eine Sonderanfertigung

Ölfass als Senkgruppe sprich Toilette verlangte.

Im Video sieht man eine typische Esel Tankstelle aus einem Ölfass.

Abschliessend waren wir bei einer Zaunfertigung,

Lastwagenreifen werden verbrannt die Metallseile freigelegt,

diese werden aufgetrennt und zu Zäunen verarbeitet,

diese Zäune werden zur Regenzeit zum halben Preis eines Neuen verkauft.

Die Jungen bekommen ca 20 € im Monat je nachdem,

ein Kilo Mandarinen kostet ca 1,5 €, Gemüse annähend soviel wie in Europa,

da der Wüstenstaat alles importieren muss.

Die Kinder gehen nicht in die Schule, wie Hasan leidvoll anmerkte,

höchstens in eine Koranschule wo Sie ein bisschen arabisch Schreiben lernen.

Nun da scheinen die Mädchen einen Vorteil zu haben die derweil in die Schule gehen, der sich im Erwachsenen Alter wieder umkehrt wie wir erfuhren.

Da eine Studie ergeben hat das in Afrika 70% der anstehenden Arbeiten von Frauen erledigt wird.