CLOVIS, Calif. - Clovis Mayor, Bob Whalen, helped teach English and learned about local cultures while on a recent trip to West Africa. The visit was part of a local non-profit's mission to the region.
Whalen is back in the Valley after enjoying quite the learning experience halfway around the globe.
Whalen arrived home Sunday following a mission's trip to Guinea Bissau -- one of the smallest and poorest countries in the world.
The trip was funded by a Fresno based nonprofit called, West African Vocational Schools. Whalen is currently the interim president of the group's board of directors.
The Christian nonprofit initially planted roots in Guinea Bissau back in 2006, building up the area through education and job skill training.
"The first teaching occurred just a little over 10 years ago and it was an automatics course... and it has grown significantly from that point. Now, there are over 200 students in the course," Whalen said.
Whalen arrived in West Africa just as news broke about President Trump's alleged disparaging comments made about Africa and other parts of the world.
"We did have an opportunity to meet with some embassy officials while we were over there and it does complicate things for them but at the citizens level, they like Donald Trump."
According to the Clovis mayor, the people there seem to enjoy Donald Trump and do not mind some of the things that come out of his mouth.
"They like Donald Trump, they like him because he is bold and he does say things that nobody else has ever said before."
This was Whalen's first trip to West Africa. Around 40 local non-profit volunteers have visited the area over the last decade