The Uncommon Man

February 11, 2007

MRI in Liberia: Getting to Ghanta

After checking out of our hotel, we climbed into an IRC van, picked up Edwin (Male Involvement Project trainer), Kelly (GBV Program Coordinator) and Ballah (MIP officer) and left Monrovia for the north of Liberia. The journey took us through the rain forest, past villages of thatched huts, UNMIL (United Nations Mission In Liberia) military checkpoints, large rubber plantations (the Firestone plantation is the largest in the world), and constant small groups of people walking along the road. After two hours we reached the "swap" point where James and Ballah boarded another IRC van for the four-hour trip to Lofa County, near the border with Sierra Leone. The rest of us continued for another two hours on seriously potholed roads to the town of Ghanta in Nimba County, near the border with Guinea.

Ghanta is a lively town with a central business district of small shops and a college of health sciences. The IRC office in Ghanta is surrounded by a large bamboo fence and a corrugated metal gate (very different from the cement walls and razor wire in Monrovia). I stayed in one of their IRC staff houses with Bernard, who I had lived with when I was in Liberia in November, and two others who also work for the IRC health program. Bernard and Moses are from Kenya, and Peterson is from Uganda.

That evening, Edwin and Ernerst (the Male Involvement Project staff for Nimba County) and I walked through town. The footpath took us past girls playing kickball (the ball was broken open and had no air), women preparing dinner, a man ironing clothes (the iron heated by hot coals in a central chamber), and children eagerly pointing and waving to me.

— Steven Botkin, Executive Director
Men's Resources International, USA

To read a compilation of all blog entries from Liberia with pictures, click here.

Posted by Daniel at February 11, 2007 03:29 AM


Está bien visitar Liberia, conocer sus gentes y ayudar a la recuperación de la sociedad. Que los liberianos tengan conocimiento de que a muchas personas nos gustaría estar con ellos, no están solos.

Posted by: Fuensanta Sosa Vera at March 5, 2007 05:50 PM

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