Humanitarian Trip Oct 20 – Nov 15, 2022

HUMANITARIAN TRIP
MEDICAL • DENTAL • REHAB
October 21, 2022 – November 12, 2022
Rwanda | Tanzania | Kenya

Wednesday, November 2, 2022 – Leaving Tanzania

After wrapping up some meetings and training we headed to our next country. We arrived in Nakuru, Kenya by 8 PM. We were fortunate to be the only passengers on this plane.  Starting now not all of us will be together. We may connect from time to time. Because of many projects that need monitoring and expertise we are scattered.

 

Monday, October 31, 2022 – Medical and Engineering volunteers at work

We have an incredible team at work. We divided into four groups. It was a full day for all.  Doctors, dentists, physios, and engineers were all doing their part.  Activities included past and future project reviews, medical and rehab training, dental clinic review, visits to projects in progress and meetings with community leaders. In the debrief at supper it was felt that 5 days worth of work was done. Our work today was in three communities.

 

October 29 Saturday – Arrived in Tanzania

The longest travel day got even longer. When we arrived at 6 AM in Nairobi we were told that the plane taking us to Tanzania   had broken own. After 9 hours at the airport we were issued new tickets and arrived at 6 PM. Chanel Dale, one of our team member’s persistent work got us all in the flight. The dental team and physio’s from Canada have also arrived.

In spite of this, we were happy to celebrate Scott Sankey’ birthday, complete with singing and dancing.

Friday, October 28, 2022 – Travel to JRO

Today will be our longest travel day. We left for Kigali on Friday at 10 AM, stopped for sugar cane, had partner meetings, slept until midnight, had a driver appreciation event and arrived at the airport at 1 AM for our flight at 4 AM. We will arrive in Arusha, Tanzania at 9:30 AM via a connection in Nairobi.  What a crazy day.  Scott Sankey will spend his birthday in two countries. Happy Birthday.

 

Wednesday, October 26, 2022 – Visiting the Ubumwe Community Centre (UCC)

We spent most of the day at UCC a centre for children and adults with multiple disabilities. ABW has been supporting UCC for over 12 years in the area of surgery, rehab, and vocational programs.

 

UCC provides vocational and music therapy

 

UCC also operates a school and 168 children who are in rehab also attend this inclusive school. There are 70 children in the school.

 

UCC also operates two community-based rehabilitation programs (CBR) Our purpose today was to review the existing program and discuss plans and goals for the future. It was great to have ABW board members Mona Walls and Scott Sankey. Mona is a pediatric physiotherapist and her insights are very valuable.

 

Today is Warren Schnoor’s 60th Birthday.  I have arranged surprise birthday party for him on the shores of Lake Kivu in Rwanda  complete with a fire on the beach.  His 50th birthday was in Kenya.

Tuesday, October 25, 2022 – Traveling to our project in Gisenyi, Rwanda

This morning we left Kigali and are traveling to Gisenyi to visit one of our projects for children with disabilities.  On our Journey, we stopped to visit a project started by a group of Rwandan youth.  The organization is called “ Past Initiatives” and Christian, the President accompanied us to the project site.  Their goal is to help educate the youth on preventing another genocide combined with practical ways to help the genocide survivors.  This group has 400 youth followers in Rwanda.  One of their projects is to build homes for widows who lost their families.

 

Some from our group are doing Gorilla Trekking tomorrow so they parted ways for 24 hours. We traveled through the beautiful countryside of Rwanda and arrived at one of my favorite places.  Lake Kivu Serena Hotel is only 20 minutes from our project site.  We will be here for three nights and work at our project site, More on that tomorrow.

 

On arrival, we had a meeting with our project partners to plan the next few days. Mona Walls, Pediatric Physiotherapist, and ABW board member, Scott Sankey, Project manager for Rwanda, ABW board member, and financial analyst will review the work and our future investment in this project. We are looking forward to seeing the progress after three years.