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Gabon 2013


Ivindo National Park

In a forest clearing in Ivindo National Park, a parade of female elephants brings its young into the sun to play in the creek. The calves mimic their mothers, raising high their trunks, testing the air for the scent of danger. With their smaller tusks, ears, and bodies, forest elephants are able to move quickly through the trees. In 2002, Gabon officials established the national park system, setting aside more than 10% of the national patrimony for 13 conservation parks. More recently, the government introduced measures to secure the parks and protect wildlife from poaching and illegal ivory trading.
Photo © 2008 Charles Eilers
Peace Corps Volunteer
Nigeria & Ethiopia 1966-69

Gabon/République Gabonaise
Central Africa, bordering the Atlantic Ocean at the equator, between Republic of Congo and Equatorial Guinea. Narrow coastal plain, hilly interior, savanna east and south. 267,667 km2 (slightly < CO), 1% arable.

Capital Libreville (.62M)

Population Pop 1.6M (6.0//km2)

Life expectancy 52 years


Literacy 63%

Lang(s) French (OFFICIAL), Fang, Myene, Nzebi, Bapounou/Eschira, Bandjabi

Religions Christian 55-75%, animist, Muslim <1%

Ethnic Groups Bantu tribes, including 4 major tribal groupings (Fang, Bapounou, Nzebi, Obamba), other Africans and Europeans

Gov’t Republic, Multiparty Presidential Regime

GDP/cap $16,000

PCVs 1963-68, 1973-2005; health and HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention, education, and environmental education. VOLUNTEERS SERVED 1,460.

Nat’l holiday Independence Day 17 August (1960)

Adult Books

Adventures in Gabon: Peace Corps Stories from the African Rainforest
by RPCV Darcy Munson Meijer, 2011

Paperback: 232 pages
Publisher: Peace Corps Writers (September 14, 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-13: 978-1935925101

Book Description
Anecdotes by more than thirty writers who served between 1962 and 2005. A collection of the best stories contributed to the Gabon Letter.

Kids' Books

Gabon: Philippe Ngome's painting "My family goes to market"
by Touba, Jacquiline

Format: Library Binding, 24 pages
ISBN-13: 978-0-8239-5102-4
Age Range: 8–12 years
Publisher: New York: PowerKids Press, 1997


Film: The Lost Coast of Gabon
Director: Jon Bowermaster (2007)


Bwiti’ Dance (9:52 min)

Oliver N’Goma: bané (5:43 min)

Focus Word

Focus Word for 2013 - "Friendship"

French (OFFICIAL): Amité (ah-mee-tyay)
Fang: Angome (ahn-go-may)
Myene: Ndegho (nday-go)

From Mbigou-style stone carving.
Copyright © Julie Olsen

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