Friday, September 01, 2017

Progress and the Rising Nile Waters

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The rains of 2017 have brought a spectacular volume of water to the Blue and White Niles – a hundred-year record high. The waters coming up the White Nile from Uganda and South Sudan were so forceful they managed to push back the engorged Blue Nile overflowing from the Ethiopian rains. The storms themselves are reminiscent of the storms near the Great Lakes of the US - frighteningly fierce. Homes for Sudan's super adobe houses are flood proof - the storms and high waters all the more reason for building secure houses for the less fortunate.
Blue Nile High Waters 2017
White Nile High Waters 2017

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One of HS4S’s sponsored students from last year is now working with the Sudan Youth Parliament  for Water, a youth initiative hosted by the Water Research Center at the University of Khartoum. A visit to Northwestern University’s water expert last year sparked her Interest in working on water issues and she was fortunate to get an assignment for her national service (required for all university graduates) in her area of interest. She is also volunteering with various women's advocacy organizations and with the United Nations.
Storm over the Blue Nile 2017

Our other graduate student returned to Khartoum and landed a job with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He is also finishing up his master's thesis on the European Union's responses to the Syrian refugee crisis. Last Saturday he assisted with a tour of some of the historic sites in Khartoum.

We did not send anyone this past summer, partially due to depleted funds, but also because of the visa uncertainty. We have identified a student for next year and hope to find one more. The E3 (Education, Earth-building, and Entrepreneurship) strategy is shaping up into a new grant proposal to expand our earth building with education and assistance in opening a permanent institution at the University of Khartoum for social entrepreneurship. The aim is to eventually hand all of the work over to enterprising young university graduates who will have a vision to aid the less fortunate in their own country. We will still build the earth houses, but through the local talent.