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Help to self-help 

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November 2021

The year is nearly coming to an end and we would like to provide an update on all of our projects.

In Germany, Corona keeps us in check. In the daily newspapers there is only one topic, the global pandemic. Despite bans on visiting hospitality venues such as restaurants, culture and other facilities, we are still doing very well. In Germany, we do not have to contend with the prevailing topic of finding something to eat every day. In Gambia, the situation is quite different. Food costs and building materials for our projects have exploded immensely. Especially rice, oil and sugar prices have increased. Meat and fish are out of the question.

As an association, we ask ourselves how a person or child can survive on such little food very often. Through fundraising campaigns for rice, oil, sugar, etc., we were able to alleviate the situation for a short time, but in the long term this doesnt seem to be sustainable. We are trying to advocate and bring a strong case forward to enable locate people push ahead with meaningful projects and, of course, to create more women gardens.


A lot has happened for our projects since our last update in August. The inhabitants of Sahadatou amazed us again and again. Despite the storm and heavy rain in September, the men and women worked tirelessly to realise their dream of of cultivating their own garden.



Opa, our local manager, has done some incredible things. He was constantly on the lookout for affordable but good quality building materials. The prices for both gasoline have skyrocketed to astronomical heights. Thus, we can currently only concentrate on one garden project. The site is completely fenced, the water basins installed, the pipes to the water tanks laid and water tower erected. Now all we need are the necessary water tanks.




We wait daily for the news to buy and install these tanks. This would create another green oasis and the families could enrich their mostly sparse diet with fresh vegetables. In our finished gardens, the season has begun and early plants are already on the beds.

Whether Kitty, Faraba Banta, Kiang Kolior, Kayal, Sutukoba etc. - our work bears valuable fruits. Through lively contact with Gambia, I know that two more gardens are already being created, which are financially supported by the Dutch. The idea of family gardens multiplies and that's a good thing.



Frauengarten in SutukobaFrauengarten in Sutukoba

Frauengarten in Faraba BantaFrauengarten in Faraba Banta


On the Nordbank, in Sitta Nunku, people are eagerly waiting for our construction team, but we have to wait with the fence construction. The fence material is already on site and the borehole was drilled before the beginning of the rainy season. Unfortunately, due to increased costs in Sahadatou, the finances are almost exhausted. To start now and then have to stop because of lack of money seems very unfortunate for us. So we have to wait until the money is completely collected. In Gambia, people understand this, they know that the virus in Germany has also led to short-time work or unemployment. Maybe someone would like to symbolically buy a water basin for 100.00 euros or contribute 15 stones for 5 euros for the water stand? Every euro helps.


März / April 2021

I would like to summarize the two months in Gambia all at once. Her list of necessary tasks was quite long. Unload our shipping container and distribute the content to the respective projects, visit existing projects, look for new projects and discuss and plan new initiatives with the village elders. There was little time left to really go on vacation. Because the days cannot be planned well ahead as one would expect in Germany. In Gambia something always comes up, or appointments are canceled at short notice. Improvisation was the order of the day and she enjoyed the rest phases in nature. Observe the flora and fauna on long walks. Even if Kerstin was desperate on some days because nothing worked or the planning was thrown overboard, the friendliness and warmth of the people consoled her in the evening. For those of you interested to read more in detail, Kerstin wrote a travel report on Facebook and took us with her on each of her daily trips. After a long fight and some bribes / customs fees, we got the container out of the port. The most complicated part was organizing a crane. The next day we opened the container, unloaded it and sorted it into the respective projects. The fence material for the garden in Sahadatou is on its way and is eagerly awaited by the women.

Elke Dartsch, a hard-working helper when it comes to the necessary equipment for the eye clinic, has fulfilled the dearest wishes of the eye clinic in Kanifing. They urgently needed a sterilizer. The joy was huge, because Elke Dartsch set everything in motion to fulfill this wish. Together with lots of glasses and the necessary eye drops, we handed over the important cargo. On the way back we passed the university. A student who is supported by us wanted to show us his school. The university makes a good impression. Hopefully the teaching too.

Kersin G. met with Lamin, the contact person for Mawdey Kunda. A very poor village with no electricity or clean water. They have a borehole with a solar pump sponsored by a German association in the mean time, but unfortunately Gambian specialists were at work. Nothing is working at all. This village is now receiving the donated solar kits from ABIOLA. So that they have light at night and can also charge their devices. Since Kerstin cannot go into the village because of the persistent heat, she explained everything to Lamin. He will travel to this village the day after tomorrow and hand over the solar cells with lamps.

Of course, our initial projects like Kitty, Sanyang and Rumba were also on the plan again. The gardens are a feast for the eyes. Green everywhere you look. The orange trees are now quite large and a good harvest has been brought in. We are all very proud of it and we are happy to see so many happy faces.

Januar 2021

Today we received current photos and information from Sahadatou (Upper River Region, in no man's land).

Kerstin Gebhardt was there at the beginning of December 2020 and looked at the dramatic situation and living conditions of the residents. It quickly became clear that we would help here. Because the 10 hectares of land made available will in future be cultivated by the families of the three neighboring villages. Providing hope for their own fruit and vegetables in this desolate and dusty region. Today we received photos that the well, at 35 meters deep, carries clean water to the top. Everyone around is happy and only now does everyone believe that Hand in Dand will keep their promises. Through our constant research into ways to support the people in Gambia, we came across the ABIOLA company. We got in touch with and told them about the problems faced by many families on the Nord Bank. ABIOLA is a non-profit organization and aims to support the expansion of renewable energy in African countries. Over 1,000 ABIOLA SolarKits have already been donated to Africa. Together with friendly organizations, associations and supporters, they still want to achieve great goals. ABIOLA donated the first SolarKits to us. That is incredibly valuable for the people there. Currently we want to equip 20 very poor families in the village of Mawdeh Kunda in the Upper River Devision region with the Family SolarKit in this first project. People will appreciate it and will be happy to use it. Of course, we would like to give other families the opportunity to benefit from the SolarKits.

That is why we have started an appeal for donations on the ABIOLA website. You can make such a SolarKit possible for a family directly with your donation via the link below. https://abiola.eu/627

The project ID is: 627 - families from the village of Mawdeh, Gambia


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