We are in our second full day of being at the base, time already seems to be flying by in the best of ways. The weather is worthy of mentioning as today was completely cloudless and a beautiful, sunny 83.
We started off our morning touring Macha Hospital run by the Brethren in Christ church. It’s a short five minute walk from the PTR base. It was much bigger than we envisioned it would be. Melvin, the administrator of 20 years, took valuable time out of his day to lead us in a tour around the hospital. The hospital began at this location in the 1950’s and the number of people treated HIV and Malaria has decreased significantly through the research and growth they’ve experienced. The hospital included many things we are familiar with including a reception area, maternity ward, X-Ray room, research clinic, post surgery wards, a surgical theater, physical therapy room and a pharmacy.
Some differences we noted in their hospital versus our American system included very open rooms for all of the patients together versus private rooms for each patient, the amount of technology we have in American hospitals seems immense comparatively, the differences in the way they handle sanitation is notable. I think it was incredible for the team and us to see how effective and amazing of a hospital system they have. It may look different than what we are used to but it it plays a major role in the Macha people’s health and livelihood.
They also have a nurses training school on campus, with around 170 students. They train for three years. It’s the only college in the area.
Afterwards we had team time at Eric and Corie’s house. It was a fruitful morning of discussion on what it looks like to be effective in short term missions.
Our afternoon began by looking at some artwork by a local artist. It was really neat to be able to see his talents on display and we were so glad he came to share with us.
Next came our favorite time of the day, when we spend time with the staff and children here. We spent the afternoon playing games with the children, especially teaching young people lacrosse. It was amazing to see how quickly they picked up the game and the joy they had while learning to play. We also engaged with them over ping pong, soccer, board games and reading books their little library.
After the kids went home for the evening. We walked to the soccer field and watched some soccer and basketball games while watching the sunset. We ended the evening with an amazing meal (Corie has gone above and beyond to bless us with some amazing meals this week. Everything is homemade and fresh and so delicious!), worship, and great team debrief and testimony time.
We are headed to bed now with sore muscles and really grateful hearts.
Over and out!
-Nina and Annie