GP in China

In China’s small villages, schools can be dark places where children squint and strain to see their lessons. Many schools have no electricity, and if it’s raining outside, classrooms can be completely dark.

Many struggle to see, but they don’t have the means to travel to the city to have their eyesight checked.

That’s where Global Partners comes in.

“Over the years we have hosted an optometrist whose heart is to help those who are having trouble seeing see better and to help those who are starting to have problems to prevent them from getting worse,” said a Global Partners worker. “Clinics are arranged in rural village schools, eye checks are done and a small percentage of children are determined to need prescription glasses. The glasses are purchased locally and then taken back and handed directly to the child.”

At a clinic this past spring after receiving her glasses and trying them on, an elementary student exclaimed, “Everything is so clear!”

In 2010, GP facilitated eye exams for 1,700 children in 10 elementary schools. Ninety pairs of prescription glasses were given to elementary school students who needed them.

One little first grader was said to be delayed. When given the eye exam she could not even answer or determine what was being asked of her. After more thorough examination the doctor prescribed a very heavy prescription. When the glasses were fitted on this girl, she responded correctly to the questions being asked of her. She was not used to receiving things so she tried to give the glasses back. When told they were hers to keep, she joyfully skipped off.

GP hosted two parenting seminars in 2010, which 50 people attended. These parents are striving to become better parents and better understand their children. They discussed how they can more accept their children while also helping them establish boundaries to help them grow up with a healthy self-image and a healthy idea of how they can contribute to their communities.

Global Partners also invited and hosted English-speaking teams that taught English and sports at middle schools and colleges. Hundreds of Chinese students had opportunities to improve their spoken English while learning about world cultures or improving their skills in basketball.

Tajikistan Disaster Management

Global Partners Tajikistan began responding to natural and man-made disasters in 1998.

Our Disaster Management Team (DMT) was involved in helping a village in the Badakhshan province of Northern Afghanistan recover from a flood that washed away four homes and 23 flour mills in the summer floods of 2005. The team provided material to the villagers so they could rebuild their mills and over half a kilometer of water canals. The DMT also finished a rebuilding project in cooperation with Shelter For Life in Ghalaba in the Khatlon Province. Forty-eight homes were constructed by the villagers themselves to replace homes washed away in rainstorms in June of 2005. The DMT followed up this project with disaster preparedness training emphasizing better home designs that will help them withstand extreme weather in the future.

More recently, GP aid workers from our Panjikent office responded to Tajik people affected by flooding in the Zarafshan Valley in 2010:

“We distributed 190 bags of flour to flood victims and gave out cement to help rebuild houses that were destroyed in the flood,” the GP worker reported. In the same town, an ongoing food kitchen project provided more than $20,000 worth of lunches for the poor and sick.

Global Partners quickly aided villages throughout the valley and:

• Built a bridge near the village of Rovadin to facilitate continuation of transportation and commerce
• Repaired a drinking water line in Zosun village that had been destroyed in a flood
• Constructed desks for the local school in the village of Voru
• Conducted a river bank enforcement project in Maikata, to protect the village from future flooding

After the flash floods of August 2010 that hit the town of Gharm and the villages of Navdi and Shul, Global Partners aid workers cut down and removed dead trees, provided diesel to clear roads and purchased water pipes to restore drinking water. GP rebuilt a foot-bridge to restore access to neighborhoods, and dug a canal where the river used to be.

Tajikistan Water Projects

In Tajikistan, many people now have access to clean drinking water because of Global Partners.

“The 2010 well-digging project in Shartuz District created six clean drinking water wells and is an ongoing project,” one GP worker said. “The project has benefited over 1,000 people so far. We will continue the well project in Khatlon Region expanding our operations to many more villages.”

A recent irrigation project in the village of Shahidi Bobohon of Khatlon Region benefitted 800 people who rely on crops from the fields surrounding their village. And a water project provided natural spring water to the 600 people of Takob village (Varzob District).

In the arid Zarafshan Valley, Global Partners conducted drinking water projects in the Yovon Aini region and in the village of Revad. To ensure that local villages in the Hadishar and Mastcho region could grow vital crops for their families, GP provided pipe to repair a much needed water line for irrigating fields and trees.

GP is always looking for sustainable ways to get water to thirsty mouths and dry fields. In the village of Safed Hok, GP provided a water wheel to a farmer as a test model. The design of this project is to help farmers by moving irrigation water from canals and rivers to higher ground. GP also purchased and installed 5km of water pipe to this village, providing 20 homes with drinking water. Another 150 homes benefited from drinking water received from 5km of water pipe that GP installed to the nearby village of Belgi.