Days 31-35 (June 11-15) Working in San Jose

Published: June 16th 2018
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Me with a few of the team from the Ara Project
Well this may have been the final week, but there was no slacking!! My mornings started with a lovely breakfast of fruit, yogurt, granola and fresh juice courtesy of my hosts each morning, served in the garden with the scent of jasmine around me - not a bad start to the day! Then Maricela would pick me up on her way, and we spent each day at Sam’s place working away.

We started out reviewing the new processes and forms for the visitor centre that I had implemented my last week in Islita so they’d have a full understanding of how things should work there. We spent time reviewing and reconciling all the data that had been entered into their new accounting system. We interviewed 3 potential candidates for their year-end accounting and taxes. We also worked up a full budget from beginning to end for their upcoming year - no small feat! Many discussions were had about how to handle various transactions and situations and how to do monthly reporting, and I helped Sarah by creating a template she can use to import their donation data into the software they use for donor tracking. Each day was full, without a moment wasted.

Sam and I had our final phone call with the placement agency, AfID, Friday morning, and we’re all happy with the progress that has been made in the last month. It was very gratifying to hear him say that my work with them has completely transformed their financial management - I leave knowing that they are in a better situation than when I arrived, with the information at their fingertips to accomplish their mission and grow their organization. So rewarding!

Friday evening we went out for a farewell dinner - Indian food followed by gelato. A nice way to end my time here, and I finally got a picture with the 4 of us (Sam, Sarah, Maricela, and I) so you can see who I’ve been spending my days with! Tomorrow, it’s homeward bound.


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