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Review for Rain for the Sahel and Sahara (RAIN), Portsmouth, NH, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

RAIN's work in Niger is a great example of how local community initiative with an organization's clear vision and commitment, can plant seeds that can bring new forms of life to a community in need. By working in a variety of fields, such as gardening, education, artisan co-ops, animal husbandry, for example, RAIN works with many different aspects of life in a community. Working with people with a plan for the future is an inspiration in a time when too much of the development work in Niger addresses rapid crisis intervention without a deeper understanding of of the long-term needs of rural communities in Niger. RAIN's understanding of Nigerien communities also included the idea that women are important and powerful sources of social change in their communities. Women's participation in RAIN activities provides a firm base of motivated community members that demonstrate their initiative by participating in activities which have a direct impact on them individually as well as on the community as a whole.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I helped to develop a bilingual literacy curriculum and organize a teacher training. The women and other members of the villages with literacy programs are so excited about RAIN's interest in their community and the opportunity they have to learn to read and write. The idea is not only to educate the adults in order to help them, but also so that parents and family members can understand and encourage their children after experiencing the importance being literate in contemporary Nigerien society.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

RAIN's larget obstacle is their lack of funds. The amount of work that they do is amazing. Many of the projects are ready to be implemented in new target areas and there are many new ideas that I hear about that are just waiting for the funds to get them started.

Role:  Professional with expertise in this field & I helped with a teacher training workshop and literacy curriculum development.