The second session of Kekeli training got under way last week. We had 13 women the first day and 15 the second day. The candidates are really smart and good, and they already have a good feeling amongst each other.
Just to keep in touch, here is the latest from Kekeli, the work with women’s health promoters here in Ghana.
The second session of Kekeli training got under way last week. We had 13 women the first day and 15 the second day. The candidates are really smart and good, and they already have a good feeling amongst each other. This is so inspiring to see, how the group of women build up a unity amongst themselves. This is so encouraging for the future, the vision is that Kekeli will grown into a dynamic grassroots movement for health and development, and providing women’s leadership role models. Doris and Olivia from the first batch has come to help out. The training is led by volunteers from the US, Olivia and Jennifer. They are doing well. Olivia is a nurse from San Diego, and Jennifer is a public health graduate from Washington DC.
The candidates come from 9 of the communities that are part of the Northern Zone of the water project, and 6 more communities that lie to the north and North east of the water project area. The training is held at Somekpe village. That is the central location for the Northern Zone.
All the women from the first batch are active except Mawusi from Workpoe who has moved. She has been replaced by another very good candidate who is learning from Dorcas of Agorve and is catching up soon.
The volunteers are adding more teachings about blood pressure and maternal health. They are using a lot of drama and role play, and everyone is having fun. Emperor has been translating so far, as Bernice has been ill, but today I spoke with Bernice, so she is fine now and will be doing the translation for the rest of the training.
We are having plans for meetings of all the women together later (that is all 28 of them!) in the end of October, and other seminars before the end of the year. The other villages in the area are already quarrelling of which are will be the next training, scheduled for April next year. Probably it will be the communities along the road from Kpedzeglo towards Adidome, that is the communities near the road. .
Other volunteers from Canada are scheduled for later in the year and next spring when the next Kekeli session will start. And early next year we have some volunteers from Norway who is going to concentrate on health education through drama. We are busy researching and planning how to structure this work now. Creative ideas are very welcome!
Things in the water project and with the TBA’s (village midwives) are all going well. The homeopathic clinic now has its own room in the clinic, and we are doing clinics and follow up in several villages. The team in the UK is sending a senior homeopath to Ghana almost every month. We are back in contact with Engineers Without Border and hope to build new filters in January. I am off to Burkina Faso next week. We are having and independent evaluation done. And another ten day training session, starting on the 26th of September for ten days. Our funding for Burkina Faso is running out at the end of the year. We will regroup and plan new activities, and if we get some funding, hopefully resume the work, with a slightly different structure or format sometime before the middle of 2008. Much depends on the evaluation.
Other than that an assessment team is going to the flood affected areas in the north of Ghana. We are a bit late, but judging from what we hear in the media, there will be work do to there for some time to come. We are trying to select on neglected community and do something concrete for them. We will start with medical, and if things go well, we will try to assist with the reconstruction too.
We are working on the health education as best as we can.
Olivia, a volunteer nurse from San Diego came in July. She has been doing well with the work. The two last weeks she had meetings with the Kekeli women, the first week 7 came, and this week 11 came. It seems Mawusi from Workpoe will not be able to continue, she is pregnant and has moved to the village of her husband. And Olivia has been away for weeks at some Catholic training, we are not too sure if she is coming back to Seva. Others are doing well. Juliana from SItorlokope delivered a healthy boy.
The women reported about all their activities, and all are really trying. I will try to compile their report and send you later sometime. Olviia has recorded all the details in the notebook. Last week Olivia gave them all the duties to give lectures to teach the others, and they performed it well. This was followed by a competition, the women divided themselves into two teams, one called New Life Team, and the other Alavanyo (it will be good!) team. The competition was hard fought by the Alavanya team triumphed with 31 points over New Life’s 30 ½ points. At last weeks meeting they requested to get a lantern, that would facilitate them teaching in the evenings, so we obliged and gave them each a kerosene lanterns and new stock of condoms, they are all doing a good job popularizing condoms.
The TBA’s (Traditional Birth Attendants) also came this week, all day Thursday they had meetings and class with Olivia who used the flip charts from the US to explain about the growth of the baby in the womb through the trimesters. They had many questions about miscarriages and other issues, and a new class for the TBA’s is scheduled for next week Friday. They received restock of cord clamps and next week they will get a rubber spread that can be easily cleaned that will be used during the deliveries.
Several of the women want to take initiative for building public toilets in their village. Some of the villages don’t have public toilets at all. We will think what we can do about this and the best way to approach it, but probably in 2008 we will start working on this important work. We just have to make sure to make the right approach. If we make it too easy it won’t be good, the communities will not maintain the cleanliness of the new toilets. So we will set certain conditions for each community to demonstrate their commitment and share the labour and perhaps the cost.
We have started preparing for the training of the second session of Kekeli women, the candidates will come from the Northern Zone of the Zongo Water project. Jennifer is the next volunteer, she is a public health graduate from Washington DC area and we are expecting her on September 9th. The Kekeli training session is scheduled to start on Tuesday the 18th of September.
Olivia has been doing the rounds of the churches talking about AIDS and HIV and has done teachings and checking about Blood Pressure in many communities. A lot of women over 30 has high blood pressure here.
The water project has problem with road construction bulldozers wrecking many pipes between Horkpoe and Agorve, so that three communities have been without water the last two weeks, hopefully within another week or two we will be able to resume service. We called the communities to come to work and dig and most of the digging and re-trenching is finished, I hope it will be completed by next Wednesday. The contractor is supposed to replace the pipes, we are pushing, and also requesting the local DCE (District Chief Executive) to put pressure as the contractor is working for the District.
For the next three days, we will have homeopathic medical camps, today Seva, tomorrow Dadogbe, and Tuesday Tedeafenui. Angie, an experienced homeopath from the UK is visiting and will be working with Emperor. The two villages are areas where we hope to do Kekeli training in 2008, if things well. We will also be checking blood pressure and do health education as the homeopathy is going on.
We are preparing more visual charts and laminate them. The women will use for teaching in the communities.
Just to keep in touch, hope to hear from you when you have the chance. Another volunteer for Seva is leaving on the 9th from Washington DC.
BRIEF PROJECT DESCRIPTION
The center will serve as a static health facility and will also deliver mobile services to the community. The aim is to provide an accessible, local service to the residents of Sukhbaatar district with a range of professional and affordable health services, and health education programmes to promote their wellbeing. The project team will also provide itinerant services to the local community activities like medical missions, community health sessions and other primary health care activities.
An earthquake is the result of a sudden release of stored energy in the Earth’s crust that creates seismic waves.
An earthquake is the result of a sudden release of stored energy in the Earth’s crust that creates seismic waves. Earthquakes are accordingly measured with a seismometer, commonly known as a seismograph. The magnitude of an earthquake is conventionally reported using the Richter scale or a related Moment scale (with magnitude 3 or lower earthquakes being hard to notice and magnitude 7 causing serious damage over large areas).
At the Earth’s surface, earthquakes may manifest themselves by a shaking or displacement of the ground. Sometimes, they cause tsunamis, which may lead to loss of life and destruction of property. An earthquake is caused by tectonic plates getting stuck and putting a strain on the ground. The strain becomes so great that rocks give way by breaking and sliding along fault planes.
Earthquakes may occur naturally or as a result of human activities. Smaller earthquakes can also be caused by volcanic activity, landslides, mine blasts, and nuclear experiments. In its most generic sense, the word earthquake is used to describe any seismic event—whether a natural phenomenon or an event caused by humans—that generates seismic waves.
An earthquake’s point of initial ground rupture is called its focus or hypocenter. The term epicenter means the point at ground level directly above this.
Most naturally occurring earthquakes are related to the tectonic nature of the Earth. Such earthquakes are called tectonic earthquakes. The Earth’s lithosphere is a patchwork of plates in slow but constant motion caused by the release to space of the heat in the Earth’s mantle and core. The heat causes the rock in the Earth to become flow on geological timescales, so that the plates move slowly but surely. Plate boundaries lock as the plates move past each other, creating frictional stress. When the frictional stress exceeds a critical value, called local strength, a sudden failure occurs. The boundary of tectonic plates along which failure occurs is called the fault plane. When the failure at the fault plane results in a violent displacement of the Earth’s crust, the elastic strain energy is released and seismic waves are radiated, thus causing an earthquake. This process of strain, stress, and failure is referred to as the Elastic-rebound theory. It is estimated that only 10 percent or less of an earthquake’s total energy is radiated as seismic energy. Most of the earthquake’s energy is used to power the earthquake fracture growth and is converted into heat, or is released to friction. Therefore, earthquakes lower the Earth’s available potential energy and raise its temperature, though these changes are negligible.
The majority of tectonic earthquakes originate at depths not exceeding tens of kilometers. In subduction zones, where older and colder oceanic crust descends beneath another tectonic plate, Deep focus earthquakes may occur at much greater depths (up to seven hundred kilometers). These seismically active areas of subduction are known as Wadati-Benioff zones. These are earthquakes that occur at a depth at which the subducted lithosphere should no longer be brittle, due to the high temperature and pressure. A possible mechanism for the generation of deep focus earthquakes is faulting caused by olivine undergoing a phase transition into a spinel structure.
Earthquakes may also occur in volcanic regions and are caused there both by tectonic faults and by the movement of magma in volcanoes. Such earthquakes can be an early warning of volcanic eruptions.
A recently proposed theory suggests that some earthquakes may occur in a sort of earthquake storm, where one earthquake will trigger a series of earthquakes each triggered by the previous shifts on the fault lines, similar to aftershocks, but occurring years later, and with some of the later earthquakes as damaging as the early ones. Such a pattern was observed in the sequence of about a dozen earthquakes that struck the North Anatolian Fault in Turkey in the 20th century, the half dozen large earthquakes in New Madrid in 1811-1812, and has been inferred for older anomalous clusters of large earthquakes in the Middle East and in the Mojave Desert.
Size and frequency of occurrence
Small earthquakes occur nearly constantly around the world in places like California and Alaska in the U.S., as well as in Chile, Peru, Indonesia, Iran, the Azores in Portugal, New Zealand, Greece and Japan. Large earthquakes occur less frequently, the relationship being exponential; for example, roughly ten times as many earthquakes larger than magnitude 4 occur in a particular time period than earthquakes larger than magnitude 5. In the (low seismicity) United Kingdom, for example, it has been calculated that the average recurrences are:
* an earthquake of 3.7 or larger every year
* an earthquake of 4.7 or larger every 10 years
* an earthquake of 5.6 or larger every 100 years.
The number of seismic stations has increased from about 350 in 1931 to many thousands today. As a result, many more earthquakes are reported than in the past because of the vast improvement in instrumentation (not because the number of earthquakes has increased). The USGS estimates that, since 1900, there have been an average of 18 major earthquakes (magnitude 7.0-7.9) and one great earthquake (magnitude 8.0 or greater) per year, and that this average has been relatively stable. In fact, in recent years, the number of major earthquakes per year has actually decreased, although this is likely a statistical fluctuation. More detailed statistics on the size and frequency of earthquakes is available from the USGS.
Most of the world’s earthquakes (90%, and 81% of the largest) take place in the 40,000-km-long, horseshoe-shaped zone called the circum-Pacific seismic belt, also known as the Pacific Ring of Fire, which for the most part bounds the Pacific Plate. Massive earthquakes tend to occur along other plate boundaries, too, such as along the Himalayan Mountains.
There are many effects of earthquakes including, but not limited to the following:
Shaking and ground rupture
Shaking and ground rupture are the main effects created by earthquakes, principally resulting in more or less severe damage to buildings or other rigid structures. The severity of the local effects depends on the complex combination of the earthquake magnitude, the distance from epicenter, and the local geological and geomorphological conditions, which may amplify or reduce wave propagation. The ground-shaking is measured by ground acceleration.
Specific local geological, geomorphological, and geostructural features can induce high levels of shaking on the ground surface even from low-intensity earthquakes. This effect is called site or local amplification. It is principally due to the transfer of the seismic motion from hard deep soils to soft superficial soils and to effects of seismic energy focalization owing to typical geometrical setting of the deposits.
Landslides and avalanches
Earthquakes can cause landslides and avalanches, which may cause damage in hilly and mountainous areas.
Following an earthquake, fires can be generated by break of the electrical power or gas lines. In the event of water mains rupturing and a loss of pressure, it may also become difficult to stop the spread of a fire once it has started.
Soil liquefaction occurs when, because of the shaking, water-saturated granular material temporarily loses its strength and transforms from a solid to a liquid. Soil liquefaction may cause rigid structures, as buildings or bridges, to tilt or sink into the liquefied deposits.
Undersea earthquakes and earthquake-triggered landslides into the sea, can cause Tsunamis. See, for example, the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake.
Earthquakes may result in disease, lack of basic necessities, loss of life, higher insurance premiums, general property damage, road and bridge damage, and collapse of buildings or destabilization of the base of buildings which may lead to collapse in future earthquakes