Botswana is a sparsely populated country of just over two million people located in Southern Africa. Despite rapid economic growth in recent years, Botswana still faces many development concerns. Drought and desertification are prevalent nationwide, threatening environmental health, agriculturally based livelihoods, and the traditional livelihoods of Bushmen hunter-gathers indigenous to the country. Like many other countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, HIV/AIDS is highly prevalent throughout Botswana, with more than one in three adults being affected by the disease. As a result of facing one of the highest HIV rates in the world, average life expectancy has been dramatically cut to only fifty-three years of age and many children have become orphaned.

Heather Ramshaw

 I am an extremely outgoing and adventurous individual from Guelph, Ontario. For my 8 month field placement I will be heading to Shakawe, Botswana to work with communities of indigenous San people. I am interested in microfinance, sustainable agriculture and small business development. I also love swimming and being outdoors! I believe that everyone has the capacity to be creative and can’t wait to run my own organization helping others move forward with their own income generating ideas.

Kelsey Herglotz

My name is Kelsey Herglotz I was born in Toronto but grew up in and around London, Ontario. For my placement in September I will be going to the north-western corner of Botswana to a small town name Shakawe where I will be working with an organization called Trust for Okavango Cultural and Development Initiatives or TOCaDI for short. I do not know exactly what I will be doing while I am there but I know I am excited. I am also excited to immerse my self in the Botswana ways of life and see some amazing wildlife!

Kyla McKee

I’m from Guelph, Ontario and always felt a strong pull towards the field of development. I am passionate about women’s rights and entrepreneurship, and how microfinance can foster them. In the fall I will be working for Gantsi Craft Trust in Ghanzi, Botswana. I am very excited to work with this organization, whose mission is to empower the indigenous craft producers. For fun, I volunteer, lifeguard competitively, read, listen to good music, and travel.

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