We are all very excited to have our founder/chairman Geoff Fox back from his trip to England. He has lived in Mufindi since 1959 and has such a generous heart for this area. Anyone who knows him and his work can testify that he is committed to seeing this project reach its fullest potential, and he has daily input on the progress of each project. He could easily relax and sit only as a figure-head leader in this organization, and "let the cards fall where they may" in terms of the devastation the HIV has brought to this community, but instead he invests a tireless effort trying to see success for each of the NGO's projects.
This hands on approach is perhaps most evident in terms of development and building projects. Currently there are six major building projects happening simultaneously under the NGO, with a carpentry school starting in the new year. This week an informal discussion about the plans of finishing all of these projects laid out the schedule of work for the carpenters and mason workers.
Dr. Leena Pasanen is blessing us all by moving to Mufindi later this year, and her house- dubbed 'Mapeme House,' due to the trees that surround the house- is nearly finished.
When the current carpentry team is finished with the ceiling and floor installation at Mapeme House, they will move to our Mdabulo Hospital Project where a refurbishment is happening. Several in-patient wards are being refurbished as we speak that will allow the facility to gain more in-patient beds and offer an even better health care service to the community. Right now roofing is being done, and a mason working team will move in after the roof is complete, after which the carpentry team will move in to install a new ceiling.
That roofing team will then move to the clinic at Igoda Children's Village. This will be the clinic where Dr. Leena will be doing a large portion of her work, not just with the 70+ children at the Children's Village, but also with the community as clinics will be held for the surrounding villages, and the clinic will be open for patients as well year-round. When complete, the clinic will be the first health facility ever opened in the village. After the roofing is complete, the mason workers when finished at Mdabulo will come to plaster the walls, then will come the carpentry team to install its ceiling.
This rotation will continue- roofing, then mason work, then plastering of walls, then ceiling, following the clinic as the teams will follow each other to the Nursery school and office under construction.
Finally, at Mwefu primary school two new classrooms are being built as the community shows great initiative in contribution to their school's development. The roofing; mason work, and ceiling are all being done by an independent team from the Mwefu area.
It is not an insignificant thing to mention that all building is done by local workers, using materials purchased locally. Donations to these building projects don't just get the buildings constructed offering unprecedented services to the community, they also improve the local economy helping the villages lift themselves out of poverty and start to recover from the effects of the HIV pandemic.
Consider the follow a couple of "before" pictures, with progress updates coming next week!
|Mdabulo roofing of in-patient ward in progress|
|One classroom complete, and another (to the left) |
on its way at Mwefu Primary School