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Brenda’s Travel Diary

Tuesday, 26 Feb 2013

Location: Kahama, Tanzania

MapTuesday, February 26th

Today was our last day in Kahama and we still had so much to do! The day started with trying to find a way to take all of the Faraja items out to the orphan’s group in Isegehe. Joseph, as always, came by to help and we headed out to the area near the hospital where a lot of the ‘cabbies’ hang out. We made a deal with Josepheti, a cab driver that I’d been using a few days ago. We went to the container and crammed more items into the three large bins from The Summerland Montessori School and managed to get them and some boxes into into the open trunk and back seat of the cab.

When we pulled into the compound of the orphans group Scholastica and Mary were both there and did the “Price is Right” dance for us. (I’m sure you can picture that Sheena!) It was unfortunate that most of the kids were in school but we didn’t have a lot of choice about the timing. They loved the album and made little squeals with every page turn. After a brief photo shoot, we were on our way.

I decided since we were already paying for a cab, we may as well keep getting things done, so we headed back into town and grabbed all of the rest of the stuff from our room that needed to go back into the container. Then, from the container we picked up the rest of the Muvumu Orphanage stuff.

The kids were there when we arrived and eagerly helped us carry all of the barrels and boxes in. Lucia, the woman who lives with the kids was home and someone quickly ran to get one other ladies who is on the orphanage committee. We distributed books, blankets, clothes, school supplies and kitchen items to an excited bunch of kids and did another quick photo shoot before heading on our way.

I had a meeting to go to with a few of the education group so was dropped off at the TRC while Joseph and LeAnne went to get four bus tickets for the next day. Pene and Anne were due back from their safari today and would be travelling back to Rwanda with us.

At the meeting we discussed the fact that the books we’re sending aren’t getting distributed throughout the district fast enough. We talked about how we can make things work better for all of us and then walked over to the containers so I could show them where all of the teacher resource materials and library books were sorted to.

We arrived a bit late for the meeting with the Amani families and found out that Flora was still sick and now Anna’s grandfather had died so neither of the women were there.Luckily for us the nurse matron, Grace came to help as well as another Flora who works in the CTC area.

The Amani room was filled with over 150 boxes and barrels so first we had to do some quick sorting. It was awkward and hot in such a small place. The crowd outside was growing and we could quickly see that the original plan the ‘mzungus’ had about how to distribute was not going to work. We couldn’t just give out school bags and t-shirts to the Amani kids when so many of the siblings were there. The parents that had come all the way back for a second time were expecting something also. We ended up giving the Canada t-shirts to everyone along with a toy for each of the children. Honestly, I was in the back sorting while a lot of the stuff was handed out so I can’t remember now if the back packs went out at that time. Anyway, everyone was thrilled. The kids loved all of my son’s trucks and cars that he sent!

The ladies & I decided that it would be best to hand out the bins that were destined for specific kids to them when there wasn’t such a crowd. Believe me that would not have gone over well!!! The other family bins will go to those most vulnerable as determined by Flora and Anna. Everything else was sorted into categories like toys, household items, clothes, etc. and would also be distributed over time. The ladies assured me that all the appropriate pictures would be taken on the camera we gave them last year and the memory card mailed to you Melinda!!!!

I had another meeting with Dr. Andrew to go to and the education guys sat in on that. We talked about the items left in the container and who would be responsible for what. We also went over ideas about how we could make the next container experience even better!

It was way past beer o’clock so I headed back to meet up with the girls. We still had a lot of packing and organizing to do. We gave away some more things and then met up with everyone over dinner to say goodbye. We all felt like we weren’t ready to go yet although we do miss everyone back home.

Our alarms were set for 4:40 am so we headed to our rooms! I ened up staying up half of the night blogging and trying to upload pictues on this slow internet. I didn't know when I'd get a chance to get on here again!!

Off to Rwanda tomorrow to deliver books to Costa's school, visit the pig co-op and see our Rwandan family!