July 06

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PULSE journey started in Nigeria!

Abuja airport

Just landed in Abuja airport! 初抵達奈及利亞

(往下閱讀中文版本)

After 22 hours flight connecting in Hong Kong and Addis Ababa, I arrived in Abuja, Nigeria where I will have my PULSE assignment at CHAI (Clinton Health Access Initiatives) for 6 months. Just when I thought it was a smooth arrival after immigration, the airport pick up driver arranged by CHAI didn’t show up. Carrying my suitcase and backpacks searching for a paper with my name under the sun wasn’t a joyful experience but it didn’t bother me that much. Somehow I have expected this may happen. While I was thinking of calling CHAI, the airport security guy was very kind to remind me not to use my cell phone in public which may lead me an easy target for crime. He offered to call by using his phone and with his help I was able to reach CHAI people to re-arrange a driver immediately. My initial impression of Nigeria was the kindness of its people and this hasn’t been changed till now.

My first 2 weeks experience at CHAI was amazing. In addition to a very warm welcome offered by all CHAI employees, my on-boarding sessions were arranged in a very structured and organised way by the team I am working with. In order to best utilise my expertise and create the most memorised work experience in Nigeria, CHAI assigned me a wide range of job objectives from project management, supply chain analysis to demand generation campaign. I am very excited about the challenge and the variety of job scope. In just 2 weeks, I already created a project plan and completed fish bone analysis for the project to improve primary health care performance. Meanwhile, I have also supported a teammate to complete our work plan for Malaria RDT (Rapid Diagnostic Test) awareness campaign. Till this moment, I didn’t feel any difficulty to adjust myself to work in Nigeria since CHAI is as efficient and fast pace as GSK. I am also pleased with the fact that I could be very productive to make contribution from day one!

Life in Nigeria has been full of fun and adventure so far. Due to unstable electricity supply, power outage may happen several times a day while we are at work, shopping in a super market or even during morning shower! Nigerian are like never bothered by the sudden darkness and soon I also got used to it and could continue whatever I was doing in the dark. During my 1st week in Nigeria, CHAI people took me and another GSK volunteer, Jeevini, to apply for a local SIM card. To our surprise, it was roadside with just a few tables and chairs! The CHAI driver explained to us that normally it would be a long queue if we apply it in the shop so telecom sometimes arranged a few service stands outside its shop in order to serve more customers. Even though just a roadside stand, the service was not compromised. The telecom staff registered data, collected finger prints and took photos all by a small device on his hand. Even cutting SIM card to fit my phone was done in just a minute! I was really impressed and enjoyed this special experience.

Abuja is a modern city mainly built in 1980s so it didn’t take me much efforts to adjust myself to live here. However, this doesn’t diminish the fun to explore this city and people’s life here. I can’t wait for more adventures in the coming months!

SIM

bought SIM card on roadside 在路邊申辦電話卡

mRDT

Malaria RDT (Rapid Diagnostic Test) and my test result – it’s negative! 瘧疾診斷測試

power outage

shopped in the dark as power supply is not stable in Nigeria 因為供電不穩常常跳電, 黑暗中繼續在超市買東西

fishbone

completed my fish bone analysis after a week of research 經過一星期的資料收集, 完成我的第一張魚骨圖分析

經過了22小時的飛行,途經香港和阿迪斯阿貝巴轉機,終於抵達我要生活六個月的奈及利亞首都阿布賈了!順利完成通關手續,正當我覺得一切都很完美時,出了機場卻看不到來接機的司機,在大太陽下拖著大行李箱背著登山背包,來回找有我名字的字條實在不是一件令人開心的事,當我在找地方想打電話給我要支援的非營利組織CHAI時,機場的安全人員馬上提醒我不要在外面拿出手機,他很熱心的用他的手機幫我跟CHAI的人聯絡,在他的幫忙之下終於找到人安排車子來接我,當地人的熱心讓我對奈及利亞留下很好的第一個印象!

在CHAI工作的兩個星期感覺很棒,除了受到很溫暖的歡迎外,我要一同工作的團隊安排了緊湊有組織的訓練課程讓我能很快的上手,為了善用我的專長和提供我多樣的工作體驗,CHAI幫我安排的工作內容包括專案管理、供應鏈分析、和需求推廣,我很興奮能有這樣的挑戰以及工作的多樣性,在短短兩個禮拜之內,我已經完成了一個改善基層衛生單位工作效能的專案時程規劃和魚骨圖分析!同時我也跟一個CHAI同事合作完成了推廣瘧疾測試器需求的工作表。在非營利組織工作到現在為止,我沒有太大適應上的問題,CHAI跟GSK一樣非常的有效率而且快節奏,我很高興我馬上就能夠貢獻一己之力。

在奈及利亞的生活充滿了樂趣與冒險,由於電力供應不穩這裡時常會跳電,不論是在上班時、在超市、甚至是早上洗澡到一半時隨時都可能會跳電變成一片漆黑,當地人似乎完全不受影響,很快的我也習慣了在摸黑中繼續做事。剛到的第一個禮拜,CHAI的同事帶我和另外一位GSK志工Jeevini一起去申辦電話卡,我們驚訝的發現原來辦電話卡地方就在路邊,只有幾張桌子跟椅子,CHAI的司機跟我們解釋一般都是在門市裡申辦但要排隊排很久,電信公司便也在門市外提供服務,即使是路邊服務其實也不馬虎,從登錄資料、搜集指紋、到照相,服務人員手上一台小小的儀器就全部完成了,連將電話卡裁剪成迷你卡的工具都有,瞬間就完成電話設定,這有趣的路邊辦卡讓我印象非常深刻。

阿布賈建於1980年代是一個很現代化的大城市,所以不用花太多時間就可以適應這裡的生活,但是這並不減損我探索這個城市和生活的好奇心,我等不及要體驗更多的冒險了!