Filed Under (Beninese culture) by Rob on 30-03-2008

Here’s Ruth with her school bag, which we bought in Cotonou:


Pink is her favourite colour, so this bag was an obvious choice. Take a closer look though and you may notice someone you might not expect to find on a school bag:


Yes, at the top (above the Olympian bear) is the Beninese president, Yayi Boni (or Boni Yayi, to be more correct). Yes, a president on a school bag – that’s a new concept, eh? I cannot imagine kids back in the UK going to school with Tony Blair or Gordon Brown on their school bags, and I don’t suppose the US have ‘Bush bags’ either. Still, when you think about it, it makes perfect sense. Yayi Boni has brought in numerous changes since he came to power two years ago, including educational reform. This includes education at elementary level being free. Here’s an article about Yayi Boni and here’s his blog. Also, don’t forget to click on the RHS of this blog under ‘Benin’s economic growth’ for a fab article.


Other news…

* Lois has just had a ‘girls weekend away’ at Casa del Papa, near Ouidah.
* The rest of us went to the Peace Corps auction on Saturday, and got some good bargains.
* Rob’s heading to Mali next month, to teach an ethnomusicology course there. He’s wondering whether he’ll make it to Timbuktu…
* We had a record-breaking power cut the other day – 28 hours without power!!! Thank goodness for generators.
* School starts back on Wednesday.
* We have a house and a car lined up for our return to the UK and fly back in July.

By the way, how well do you know Benin? Have you taken my Benin Quiz yet? It’s only 10 questions, but is fun to do. Click here to test your Benin knowledge.

1 Comment posted on "A school bag with a difference!"
Will on April 7th, 2008 at 11:54 pm #

I would wear a “Bush Bag” if they had one.