Anxious vendors and the returning fishing fleet
Senegal is a vibrant, politically stable West African nation sandwiched between the Atlantic Ocean, Sahara desert and Sahel region and subject to weather extremes – hot dry desert winds and lashing southern gales.
Its government and estimated 14 million people need assistance in many areas. Its vital fishing industry suffered major over exploitation in recent decades and JICA has been helping to rehabilitate the industry.
It is helping to boost rice production as part of a continent-wide effort to bolster food supplies and other projects aim to improve health care, provide safe water and protect the fragile environment.
Senegal has also become an important hub for so-called third country training and south-south cooperation. JICA has helped to build or rehabilitate key educational institutions and train local officials and these in turn are now holding courses for personnel from surrounding French-speaking West African countries with JICA providing the financing.
One of Africa's largest countries has few skilled industrial technicians. But with JICA financing and vocational training in neighboring Senegal, the first group of electro and mechanical engineering technicians have been undergoing advanced training in Dakar.
Senegal tripled its health budget in recent decades but like many developing countries it still needs major assistance. Japanese nurses, midwives and other personnel are helping to improve the primary health care system.
Shinichi Mori was working on Tokyo's Grain Exchange when he became interested in bee keeping in the center of Japan's capital. That led him on an unlikely journey to Senegal where he is helping to rejuvenate disappearing mangrove forests with bee keeping and the harvesting of oysters.
The village of Mereto appeared to be dying a few years ago. But JICA financed the construction of a vital water tower and financed other projects and Mereto today is a bustling regional center with a bright future.
It is one of the most colorful and exciting sites along Africa's vast coastline—the return of the local fishing fleets. But Senegal's fishing industry is in crisis and Japanese experts and volunteers are helping to solve the problem.
Technicians are the backbone of many sectors of a nation's economy and social structure. JICA is helping training key personnel in so-called third country training projects in which the agency provides funding but the training is conducted by national staff in third countries.