Chuuk, formerly known as Truk
Chuuk is having a hard time. Weno, the island with the airport on it, has a reputation for corruption and crime. Most tourists are scuba divers who go immediately to a ship (called a live-aboard) for a week of diving the many Japanese ships sunk in the lagoon. The state is bankrupt, and the soaring price of fuel has crimped travel in an place where motor boats are the most effective means of transportation. The government offices we visited were without electrical power. The roads were in a terrible state: you usually travel at 5 miles per hour, dodging the largest potholes.
Internet is really expensive. They have a state-back monopoly, and they would pay over $1000 a month for a connection that is not as fast as my home DSL line in California for $25. But, they hope that this problem will be overcome someday.
I was quite impressed by the people I met in Chuuk who are dedicated to kids and education. We had good discussions about how to extend Internet around to different schools, and apparently they are talking to the Green WiFi/Meraki folks about a mesh network (which I think would be well suited to Chuuk). After talking with the special education team, we walked across the way and met with the curriculum team. We were given a bunch of books created by teachers in Chuukese, and got to meet one of the authors, Johndy Nakamura. We're planning on scanning these in, and the team gave us permission to add these books to Bookshare.org.
Donna has a good friend, Kathy Mori (not sure of the spelling), who works in the health agency. They've worked together on screening children with vision impairments. One mother brought her daughter to Kathy's office to see Donna, a cute toddler with one good eye and one eye blinded from Vitamin A deficiency. I understood that this girl was one of a pair of twins, but that the other twin had died from complications of this vitamin deficiency.
Donna wanted to get out and visit one of the other islands in the lagoon, and asked her friend Kathy if she could help arrange the visit. And thus another adventure was kicked into motion!