FROG was able to assist Nicholas Smith with funding to purchase tractor fuel, with the intent on building a new road for his village – Kwatamang New Road Project. The road is now complete, and community members can now avoid trudging through muddy water to get from one end of the village to the other.
Kwatamang is a small village on Annai Village Land, between Annai proper and the Rupununi river. The village is divided by a low area that floods during rainy season.
The proposed grant would pay for two drums of fuel so the Kwatamang Village tractor (with help from the villagers) could raise a section of ground linking East and West Kwatamang during the rainy season.
The Senior Councilor Jordan Joseph has stated the the villagers would do all the labour, and the village tractor could be used if the money for fuel could be found.
The section of the land is not to big. maybe 75-100 yards long. The land does not flood high… it is kind of one very large puddle that never drains and is always wet.
The FROG Grant successfully provided funds to improve a well used path in Kwatamang Village, Guyana. The village is divided into two main hills with a low ground in between. That low ground was always muddy and near impassable during rainy season. The FROG grant gave the village enough to build this ground up. The Grant went towards fueling the Village tractor and paying the labor to collect rock and rocky dirt and build a road through the wet, muddy area.
CHALLENGES AND SUCCESSES
The challenges of the project were few. The main one was that once the Village knew of the Grant money they assumed that it could be spent in any manner whatsoever. I had a young couple approach me very professionally one evening and state they knew I had a lot of money and kindly asked for transpay to Georgetown. They stated that FROG Grant money was fine to use. I had a few other stories like this and honestly receiving this Grant had an affect on how my Village saw me. I must also state that I had been documenting the meetings, the collection of the money, the initial work, the distributing of the money.. everything on video. This videoing was intended to introduce a possible transparent system for local grants. In January I had the best bike wreck I have had in 20 years and my computer with all the video uploaded on it exploded. I had was lucky enough that I took a few pictures with my iPod Touch and this is where the pictures (hopefully) pasted below come from. Also with no computer I was not able to type this very report until I reached Georgetown, a solid month after the project was complete.
The Successes easily outweighed the Challenges. Simply put there is now a path that will make crossing a giant mud puddle a lot easier. The local mini-buses now can drive to Small Kwatamang and pick people up or drop supplies off. The local Bull-ox carts can cross. The Children can come to school on rainy days. The project was designed by the villagers, budgeted by the villagers and completed by the villagers, they have a lot of ownership in the project. Ownership in projects leads towards maintenance of projects, maintenance of projects leads towards sustainable projects. I feel this project is sustainable and successful.