I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10
Yesterday was a day of life in the full! We started the day as most of our days in Bo begin – a delicious breakfast prepared by Fudia and Rosaline and worshiping Papa God with our partners at the Child Rescue Centre (CRC) and Mercy Hospital. The morning was spent doing one of three activities. Linda and Kerry visited three schools in Bo Town with Mabel, Education Manager at the CRC. Students packed into classrooms were thrilled to see their visitors. Mabel and Kerry led discussions with teachers that had participated in the summer team’s Teacher Learning Exchange. They were able to obtain follow up data about implementation of the classroom practices discussed a few months ago and learn about which practices have been most useful to teachers in Bo.
Doug, Kristen and Julie spent the morning with JJ (Sponsor a Child Coordinator) and Imourana (Child Support Program Coordinator/Case Manager) traveling to Maguama, a nearby village about 7 miles from the Missionary Training Center. Julie recently began sponsoring Mohamed, a ten year old boy living in Maguama. On arrival the team was greeted by about 150 children excited to see, touch and mimic their new friends. Julie was able to visit with Mohamed and his mother, as well as provide them a gift of rice, school supplies and a soccer ball. (See picture of Julie and her sponsor child.)
The remaining three team members spent the morning participating in a medical outreach conducted at Mercy Hospital. Sonja and Debra worked to measure the length and mid-upper arm circumference and take the weight of each baby/toddler (about 170 in all!) to assess the growth of each child and see if another month of nutrition supplementation was indicated. Chris worked alongside Matron Augusta to perform cervical cancer screenings -- about 40 mothers were screened! (See picture of Sonja and Debra working at the outreach.)
As we spent the afternoon recovering from the heat in the peace hut, we were able to discuss each of our experiences and process together. One of the common themes we all witnessed yesterday was the amount of hope that the CRC and Mercy staff brings to the people they encounter daily and the joy they find in their work. Each of us has been feeling truly inspired and we pray that our presence can in some small way help to provide a little more hope. We laughed about funny parts of our day over a surprise dinner created by Fudia last night – shwarma and soda! Later during team devotions we were able to reflect together about how faithful God has been in each of our lives to bring us to Sierra Leone and how Jesus invited his disciples into his work during his time on earth, just as he invites all of us into a full life with him. We are so thankful to be in Mama Salone working alongside our partners!