Monthly Archives: March 2015

Birthday

Yesterday I celebrated my birthday. And although I was in a meeting of the health zone part of the day, I had a great day with lots of surprises.

Breakfast was grilled cheese sandwiches with a strong cup of coffee. My cat Mapendo was hoping for a piece of bread with cheese.

birthday breakfast

Birthday breakfast

I attended the meeting from 10am until 1pm. Then I went home for lunch. It was a ‘surprise’ lunch (of which I knew a lot already) but in spite of that, I enjoyed it thoroughly. Chicken with several side dishes and great company. Caroline had invited Badaru and her mom and had asked Anite, my house help, to join us at the table!

From left to right: Annemarie, Anite, Anisi (mother of Badaru) and Badaru

From left to right: Annemarie, Anite, Anisi (mother of Badaru) and Badaru

Desert after lunch was a very nice chocolate birthday cake baked by Caroline and presented by Badaru and herself.

presentation of the delicious birthday cake

Presentation of the delicious birthday cake

I am grateful to my heavenly Father who has brought me thus far.

Training church leaders

The training is finished. It were hectic, busy days but all went well. Monday morning 16 March, was for the last preparations but not all worked out, like to have the statistics about the treatment program in the health zone of Adi. The people of the health zone were still working on their reports.

Several church leaders came with their wives. This made that the language used was Bangala, although at the end I noticed that I started using French more because I was tired (this because bedtime for me was around midnight for three nights in a row).

Badaru gives her testimony

Badaru gives her testimony

There were many really positive points during the training. For me that was Badaru’s testimony. She is living with HIV and I knew her story as she told it before. But the fact that she stood before these church leaders and had the courage to tell them, making herself vulnerable, touched my heart. And my eyes, I must confess, didn’t stay dry. After her testimony I asked all to stand around her in a circle and one pastor to pray for her.

Participation was great. From the icebreaker on the participants were not afraid to speak, ask questions and give their opinion. There was a big discussion about condom use. Also during explanations the participants were all attention.

Full attention (chief of Adi in pink shirt next to his wife)

Full attention (chief of Adi in pink shirt next to his wife)

On their evaluation form many said that they wanted to have a follow-up, either in training or in visits from the facilitators. And that is exactly what we want to do. They also asked for a syllabus. Also something we like to do. However, we didn’t have enough time to prepare this as I translated a lot from English into French and then we needed on the spot or in our workshop preparation translate it again into Bangala. We will prepare a small syllabus though, we (Badaru, Likambo and I) decided this morning during our evaluation. Of course there were other things as well to improve and we will. One thing to keep though is the testimony of Badaru, as many have expressed it to be one of the important moments of the training.

As I said, several pastor’s wives came also, as did the wife of the chief of the Kakwa. She attended even more sessions than her husband, who was asked to attend several important meetings at the chiefdom.

Kakwa chief

Kakwa chief

Kakwa chief's wife

Kakwa chief’s wife

Achievements: February 2015

First of all my apologies. Due to an error in the website some information was deleted. Thus…I will write this about the whole month of February.

Adi has been hot, and busy.

Laura has been filming and editing for the AIDS Program. It will be a kind of documentary about the program and show how it started, how it developed into what it is now and how we see the future. She has been working with a volunteer, Beba, who came to ask one day if he could work with her so that he could learn many things about editing. Laura could finish the French version before she left on February 19. I have translated all the interviews for the subtitling she will need to put under it. I’ll make sure that it will be distributed in the UK, USA and The Netherlands (at least).

IMG_0350

Laura filming (photo Caroline)

 

Caroline is a medical doctor and following the work at the hospital. Sometimes it is hard on her, especially when she lacks all the facilities that are available in the UK (where she’s from). Sometimes she experiences new things. Like in the first week when we were helping at the prenatal clinic and a woman who was full term had come for her prenatal checkups. Her water broke though, but there was no progress. Finally it ended up to be a C-section with the birth of a healthy baby boy, whom we called Aimé after the doctor who had done the intervention.

People around here appreciate the presence of the two short termers and we have regular visitors. Like Papa Zebulona, a former teacher, but though retreated, he is still teaching the Sunday school children. He asked for a photo together with us, and we gladly agreed.

From left to right: Laura, Papa Zebulona, Caroline and Annemarie

From left to right: Laura, Papa Zebulona, Caroline and Annemarie

Also Badaru comes. She is a volunteer in the AIDS program and she is living with HIV. Together with her I am preparing a workshop for church leaders. She often has good ideas and we discuss a lot of things.

With Badaru

With Badaru

While discussing and using materials from the Channels of Hope training that I attended in South Africa in 2013, we came up with a wild idea. As Badaru speaks both French and English and as it is difficult to find facilitators who can teach in French, we decided that it is a great idea to send Badaru to the training, either this year or next year (of course preferably this year). However, we don’t have the money for her going. Also she doesn’t have a passport. We have been calculating the total costs (passport, trip, training) to be around $3,000 in total and we will need to find financial support for our dream to become reality. When she has attended this facilitator’s training, she can help me facilitating workshops using the Channels of Hope materials. Even a bigger dream, it would be great if one of our doctors (maybe Dr. Aimé, who is the focal point for the treatment and care program for PLWHA, could go together with her).

The day before she left, Caroline and I prepared a surprise for Laura. Together with Badaru (AIDS Awareness Program) and Iyete (teacher of English at the secondary school) we went for a delicious meal in Ingbokolo. It was fun. And it was a big surprise for Laura. On the way back we went to see Onzi, the French teacher of Laura and Caroline. We were offered another big meal, and because we couldn’t refuse we all took a tiny bit. We were still satisfied from our late lunch.

From left to right: Caroline, Laura, Badaru, Annemarie, Iyete

From left to right: Caroline, Laura, Badaru, Annemarie, Iyete

The church leaders have proposed a date for our training, 16-18 March. With around 45 participants. Many leaders will be invited together with their wives. A momentous occasion. Often only the men come. I really look forward to it. The time flies, and we still have lots of preparation ahead so Badaru and I want to involve Likambo as well.