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The new house


I moved couple of days ago in the new house. We managed to get one room ready at least to put my suitcases. Again a new place but a nice one now. Many things to do but it is moving forward. I manage my days by getting the renovation going on which is quite a challenge as I want to get the best but spending some time with the workers and asking again and again seems to work.
The house was previously a kindergarten and I can confirm that the kids looovvveee to paint the walls ;-)). We had to repaint the full house and change most part of the sanitary. As I said previously everything is difficult in Bangladesh but everything is possible, even getting back an old dirty bathroom is a clean proper place without changing everything ;-)
Now we are in the phase of finishes and that’s where I need to be constantly on the back of everyone as I don’t think we have the same definition of “finishes”!
What a lesson of patience for me especially with the language and cultural barrier…
But as I don’t want to spend my full time doing only renovation, I manage to get business meetings at least twice a day. I have met already a good number of people learning more about what is happening in Dhaka and Bangladesh.
I went to see Partenaire, a French NGO in order to have another idea of how another personal initiative was happening.
They take care of street children, begging to get couple of Taka. Partenaire takes them from the street and give them a chance to study on daily basis or join the boarding school. Very basic settings for this project if I compare to the sophistication of TDP I was collaborating with. Classes are taking place on the floor as they have only desks for one room. Then, in the evening, mattress and blankets are displayed to change the classroom in dormitory.
The kids are healthy, getting good food and a first aid center provides the basic medication needed. Staff, as usual, is multi tasked and dedicated to the children like a real family.
I met Radia and Melanie, two French volunteers who will leave in May after 6 months of contract. We spent a great time discussing about the project, the challenges and also the NGO community of Dhaka. They met a lot of people and gave me extremely useful advice and contacts.
I met also the Embassy Trade commission reprensetative who gave me also good information. I spent some time at l’Alliance francaise who welcomed my project with enthusiasm as they say there is no nice place to chill out in Dhaka with a freash juice and a good “gateau au chocolat”.
Also, I heard that they just opened a branch in my area and are looking for new teachers… Let see, maybe I will be one of those ;-)
Day by day the project is getting more clear in my head and each time the people I meet confirm that I am moving in the right direction.
Chez Flo and Café Flo are going to be the center point of the Responsible Business I want to develop here especially in providing skilled and semi skilled people abroad for the hospitality industry.
The country is growing and it seems quite promising but at the moment, the economy is difficult especially with the problem of the nonstop raise of the rice price.
A kilo of rice is today 42 taka when it was 38 couple of weeks ago and people are worried it will go up again. It’s because there is a shortage of stock explained in different ways by different people…
Bangladesh is composed by 95% of very poor people with a daily average income of 100 to 150 taka. You can easily do the calculation of the crisis when you see the price of the rice…
A lot of Bangladeshi see the only hope in finding a job abroad and this business is bringing a tremendous income to the country as the workers are sending 90% of their salary back to the country.
Today, what I want to do is to focus on the “niche” of supplying people only for hospitality. In couple of days, just talking to the right people, I have already some candidates ready to apply or who would like to.
So, Chez Flo and Café Flo is going to be a “live training platform” for those people who want to get a better chance to go to work for some prestigious hotel chains in decent and fair conditions....
I have managed to get a Pastry and Bakery trainee already. He will spend one month with me, working on the set up of the Café, sharing recipes and improve basic skills in Café management. With the help of a friend, we will provide free classes in the evening for English (oriented hospitality), hygiene and social behavior in a hospitality environment. If I get a partnership with a computer company, I will give some basic computer classes as how to use word, excel and emails.
Tomorrow, I promise I put more pictures ;-))

13:30 Posted in Chez Flo | Permalink | Comments (3)


Ich bewundere Dich!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wish I could do more to help, but just wanted you to know that you are doing a fantastic job! Take care and keep well! Linda xx

Posted by: Linda | 04/14/2008

Hey dear friend ;-) by leaving a comment on this blog you are already helping me by your mental support ;-))))

Posted by: Flo | 04/14/2008

Thanks Flo to speak about us,we are happy to see that your visit helps you. It is possible to put our website address to the one who could be interested?

Hey, i like a lot the first pix...it's pretty close of my own tastes!

Take care and good luck


Posted by: Mélanie | 04/15/2008

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