Oct
08

“An introduction from Afghanistan” – DFID Blogs go Live

posted on October 8th 2008 in civic leader blogging with 0 Comments

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You probably think I’ve got a screw loose to be here, given the bad
news you constantly receive about southern Afghanistan.  But I think
I’ve got the best job in DFID.  I hope I can explain why – all the ups
as well as the inevitable downs – through this blog.  And I hope I can
shed a little light on a life that I suppose is unusual by any
standards.

Vicky lives on a military base in Helmand Province, Afghanistan.  She doesn’t get out much, so she’s started a blog to talk about the work she does there for DFID, the Department for International Development.

Vicky is one of five bloggers we’ve been coaching in the art of effective bloggingEmily Poskett is a Statistics Advisor in Tanzania and Howard Taylor is Head of DFID in Ethiopia.  There are a couple more in the sidelines who’ll hopefully be up and running very shortly.

We’re very lucky in that our blogging volunteers are superb
writers with extremely interesting lives and situations with enormous
scope for great photography.  They are going to provide a fine insight
into the work that DFID do and the effect they have on the people of
the countries in which and with which they work.

The coaching programme has had its challenges. As you can imagine the budget to fly us to Tanzania was not made available, so coaching is happening online is the same manner as we did with CivicSurf.  The DFID bloggers are in full-time positions working seven days a week and in time zones and work patterns that don’t necessarily coincide with our 9 – 5 UK life.  Thankfully Griff Wigley, who has been leading the coaching, works flexible hours.

The site was built by Simon Dickson from Puffbox and it looks and functions fantastically.  He’s pushed WordPress beyond existing boundaries and included a very simple to update Google map which allows you to zoom in on the fertile valley within which Laskar Gah is sited and see the contrast with the desert all around.

So please pay a visit and leave a comment and subscribe to the RSS feeds.

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