Find us on Google+ Geek is the new chic: May 2012

Monday 28 May 2012

#ShareNiger on BBC Radio Leicester

Thanks to @JimDavisonair for speaking to me about #ShareNiger this morning. You can listen to the interview on the audio boo below.

Friday 25 May 2012

ShareNiger : At Roukayatou's home

Following on from yesterdays post, A tale of two women, here's a short video that Liz shot of me at Roukayatou's home.

It was very quiet in the car back to base. Both Liz and I are still struggling to get our heads around Roukayatou's position. She represents all of the women on fighting to survive this food crisis.

Thursday 24 May 2012

ShareNiger : A tale of two women

Ramata (38) lives in the Tera region of Niger with her husband Bouriema (50). She has two children of her own, Amadou (22) and Fatima (17) and an adopted daughter Mariama (10).
Ramarta is part of the women’s gardening group that was started by her mother Zeinaba (76) back in 2005.

Ramata #ShareNiger
Ramata (38) from the gardening project in Tera
Zeinaba had noticed that the harvests were getting worse so called together a group of women and suggested starting a gardening group. Together they went to see the local mayor to ask for some land, he agreed and they formalised the group with a certificate.
In the last seven years the gardening group has blossomed. Ramarta has a beautiful home, decorated with the plates and bowls that she collects. Her children are educated and because of her had work in her garden she hasn’t been affected by this food crisis at all.

Ramata home #ShareNiger
Ramata outside her immaculate home
Ramarta grows cabbages, aubergines, tomatoes, rice and Moringa trees on her plot and she’s recently been able to buy some livestock with the money she has made selling her crops. Thanks to her, her family is totally self-sufficient. 

Across the village is Roukayatou (36) she lives with her five children Amadou (16), Hama Amadou, (12), Aissatou (11), Hamsatou (8) and Bousraou (5) and her brothers 13 month old daughter Fadima.

Roukayatou at home #ShareNiger
Roukayatou (36) and her family are profoundly affected by the food crisis
Roukayatou and her family are profoundly affected by the food crisis. Hearing her speak about her situation is heartbreaking. 
Her husband Hama (45) left months ago to work in the gold mine and she hasn’t heard from him since.

Roukayatou says: "I’m really worried, as I’ve not heard from my husband since he left six months ago. He has gone to work in the gold mine during the dry season every year since we got married. He always sends back money. This year I’ve heard nothing from him."

Roukayatou is also a member of the gardening club but following an accident she was unable to make it to her plot to tend to her crops and they failed. She has no food and no money and she doesn’t know what to do.

Roukayatou and her children #ShareNiger
Roukayatou and some of her children
There’s no work in her village so her only option is to pack up her family and move to the city but if she did that she would have to pull her children out of school. She doesn’t want to do this but she really doesn’t have any other option.
Roukayatou and her family are currently surviving on the four small bags of cereal supplied by the World Health Organisation to feed her 13-month nephew.

That’s seven people sharing the food for one baby. Time is running out for Roukayatou.

The only toy I have seen in Africa
You can help the people of Niger get through this food crisis and continue to live their lives by helping us spread the #ShareNiger tag on Twitter. We need governments and aid agencies to step in now before it;s too late for women like Roukayatou.

For more information on the crisis in Niger and how you can help, please visit

Thank you to Mirka for awarding this post her Blog Post of the month. I really appreciate it.

Tuesday 22 May 2012

Share Niger : Digging for water

I apologise for the lack of contact, I have tech issues... I'm not complaining as it really doest sit too well with me after the things that I have seen today.

#ShareNiger Day 1 : Part 1 Digging for water
Our day kicked off with a road trip to the World Vision clinic in Komobagau. The roads are bumpy, the scenery a backdrop of deep red. Buildings, roads all made from the one thing in abundance here... sand.
We crossed lush green banks with full flowing rivers.

River Niger

But as we drove closer to our destination the flowing rivers were replaced by this...

Dry river bed

Sand and lots of it.

But the people living near the river still need water and so they have resorted to digging 6ft deep holes into the ground to find the water table.

To collect the water they use small plastic bowls to carefully scoop it out of the hole before filling their water containers to carry back home. It's back breaking work in searing heat. The water containers are heavy. Really heavy. 

This family told us that they need to collect five containers of water every day. Each morning they have to re-dig the hole because the sand has covered the water table once again.

collecting water #shareniger

Back to the village...


No, the water that they have collected isn't boiled or treated in any way before they drink it. Yes, it is gritty from the sand. 
Yes, it's shocking seeing people with no choice but to drink dirty water. 
Yes, you should think about this next time you turn your tap on.

Follow my trip via the #ShareNiger tag on Twitter.

#ShareNiger Day 1 : Africa bound

Yesterday morning at 3am I began my #ShareNiger journey to Africa. I've travelled over 2500 miles to Niamey in Niger, West Africa. The difference to where my day began and when it ended really couldn't be more different.

Niger is landlocked, bordering Nigeria and Bennin to the south, Burkina Faso and Mali to the west, Algeria and Libya to the north and Chad to the east. It is the largest nation in West Africa with 80% of it's mass being covered by the Sahara desert.


It's hot here. Really hot. The crops have failed again due to lack of rain and around 15 million people are in need of food assistance. 
The numbers are too great to comprehend but over the next few days I'm going to be telling some individual stories in the hope that you can share them with people that you know.

The trip has been dubbed #ShareNiger and my fellow traveller Liz Scarff (World Vision) has just informed me that we have already reached 1 million people. Not bad going considering we don't get moving until today.
So thank you to everyone who has already tweeted or blogged about #ShareNiger but please don't stop. We need to reach as many people as possible so that we can get aid to Niger now - before it's too late.

An African storm is brewing #ShareNiger
Looks like i brought the British weather with me...

Before I head out for the day I would like to say a very big thank you to Nicholas Kristof and his team at Half the Sky for asking me to guest post for his site. If you know me, you know how much that means to me. You can read my first #ShareNiger for Half the Sky post here.

Wednesday 16 May 2012

Cybher WIWT

I already blogged about what I was planning to wear to Cybher and my outfit was true to my plan, so for Transatlantic Blonde's WIWT Cybher special I'm going all artistic and posting this simply awesome sketch that my pal @Mim_Tweeta drew of me and Claire in our full Cybher style.

Claire (left) wearing : Dress by Warehouse, shoes by River Island
Me (right) wearing : Dress by Yan To, Boots by Rick Owens

Lizzie, thank you SO much for this it is AWESOME!

Monday 14 May 2012

Win an Exclusive Cybher Leather Satchel Co bag & goodies!

This has quite easily been one of the biggest weekends of my life and now that Cybher is over for this year I feel quite odd.
Cybher has been my life for the last ten months and pulling it together has taken every ounce of my being but I'm blown away with what I've achieved.

Of course I couldn't have done it without my team, Claire, Ryan and Erica. All our helpers on the day, Lizzie, Sarah, Becks, Ethan, Kelli, Lottie & Annabel. Our awesome sponsors The Leather Satchel Co, Freya, Savoo, AVG, Palmers, Thinking Slimmer, Hotmail, The Walt Disney Company and World Vision and most importantly amazing husband and children who have held me together.

Cybher Leather Satchel
The awesome custom Cybher bags by The Leather Satchel Co
Even with the best planning and organisation in the world it would have been nothing without the backing and support of every single person who gave up their weekend to be a part of it. I hope that you came away from Cybher feeling as inspired as I did.

Freya Lingerie Stand Cybher
Freya Lingerie at Cybher : Pic @ericawhiteman
Those of you who who came to Cybher will know that in less than a week I will be on my way to Niger with World Vision on a trip to raise awareness of the food shortages and pre famine emergency there. I hope that you will follow and support as you did when I went to Blogladesh.
You can keep up to date on the #ShareNiger tag.

So I do have a few goodies left over and as so many people are desperado to get their paws on a Limited Edition Cybher bag I thought I'd do a little giveaway....
The prize is as follows...
A Limited Edition Cybher Leather Satchel Company bag
Cybher note book
Tin of almonds
Palmers night cream
Palmers tummy butter
Palmers massage lotion
A Geek is new chic badge

To be in with a chance of winning simply use the Rafflecopter widget below (you need to be on a computer not a mobile device). The closing date is midnight GMT on 26/5/12

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday 8 May 2012

Cybher Style

With Cybher only 3 days away I'm seeing lots of frantic 'What am I going to wear?' type tweets, so I thought it was about time I shared the Cybher Style Pinterest board.

It's an inspirational board, an ideas base, it's beautiful - I love it!

Cybher Style Pinterest

Someone said to me last week that they were intimidated by just how stylish Cybher is, and that blew me away. 
If that's the impression I've created then I am totally over the moon.

What am I wearing???

A custom Yan To, mine is longer than the one in the pic and I'll be wearing it with my beautiful (comfy) Rick Owens boots.

I've added a Linky as requested, so please feel free to share your Cybher outfit posts too.
See you in 3 days!

Sunday 6 May 2012

Twitter Name Necklace

Thought I'd invest in a new necklace for Cybher next week...

Twitter name necklace

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