Working Villages founder to discuss time in Congo

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GEORGETOWN — The founder and president of Topsham-based Working Villages International will give a talk and slideshow presentation next week concerning his work in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Alexander Petroff, who graduated from Brunswick High School before receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Development Economics and founding Working Villages, will be giving his presentation at the Georgetown Historical Society, 20 Bay Point Road, at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13.

Working Villages focuses on building self-sufficient agricultural communities. Its pilot village in DR Congo has flourished since its inception 3 years ago. The lush green farm in the Ruzizi Valley, with 250 acres of organic crops being cultivated, provides a stark contrast to the barren grasslands that were there before.

“It’s amazing to see the progress,” Petroff said. “We were getting these huge agricultural reports, but it’s different to actually go and see it. We walked through the farm for hours, and only saw a small portion of the total crop. We’ll be harvesting 100 metric tons of corn in August alone!”

Log onto to to learn more. For more information on the Aug. 13 event, contact Laura Kahn at 607-1367 or

A Maine native and Colby College graduate, Alex has been covering coastal communities since 2001, and currently handles Bath, Topsham, Cumberland, and North Yarmouth. He and his wife, Lauren, live in the Portland area, and Alex recently released his third album of original music.