Sunday, March 21, 2010


In the Congo, women's hairdo's are part of their dressing.  At first it is hard to recognize our friends, because their hair always changes.  Women wear a lot of wigs and have elaborate braids and do's with their natural hair and with synthetic hair woven in.

These braids last about ten days -- if the women wash them too much, they become fuzzy, so this is not a long term hair-do!
The mystery is how do they get their daughters to hold still for this?
This is the typical man-do -- shaved or short!

More hair styles in the future!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Drilling a well -- Mutumbo Hospital

At the Mutumbo Hospital well site, we watched the drilling of the bore hole.  This is one of the drill bits.  The drill hit hard rock and the drill bit was changed for a larger one.
The drill rig is positioned, ready for the drilling to resume.
Brut force is used to make sure that the drill bit is on securely.
This is the hole that has been dug so far.
The drilling process resumes.
Chemical is added to the circulating water to kill the bacteria so that the water used in drilling will not contaminate the well.
The drilling has reached the end of the length of the first pipe, a second pipe is to be added for more depth.

The pipe is fitted tightly so that there will be no problems in the hole.  The drilling process goes on for thirty more length of pipe until potable water is found. 

Finished well with reservoir, now serving the hospital for clean surgery and dialysis.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Visit to an Orphanage

Often we are asked to visit NGO's that we cannot really help -- the budget is tight, their needs don't fit our guidelines, etc.  This orphanage is run by a group out of the US and Canada, African Help Line Society -- Congolese who have made money and have found a way to help in their homeland.  There are 68 children living in the compound with ten war widows who take pretty good care of them, and an unfortunate group of mentally handicapped.  The children sleep on the dirt floor under the benches, if it rains they cannot sleep but stay huddled under the porch roof.  The whole compound is about the size of a small house at home.  They are beautiful children.
The orphanage is trying hard to get the children adopted, advertising on the internet, but there are many children available around the world and these people do not have the resources to help with the transportation.  The young men and the older girls will not be adopted anyway.
Members of the NGO come to work with the children.

The madame has to be a bright light in their lives. 

Ceremony in Tshiabobo for the Luputa Water Project

Lily talks to women of Tshiabobo at the source -- where they have obtained the water for many years.  It takes at least two trips a day for the women to obtain enough water for their families.  In between trips they must work in the fields.  These jobs fall to the women and children in the family.  Another woman tells of the effect of carrying 30 liters of water on her head twice a day for her life.
The Luputa water project completed the first phase, to Tshiabob in September 2009.  The missionaries arrived for the celebration with local Church leaders.  Crowds of villagers awaited the opening of the water stations.  Tshiabob is a village of approximately 10,000.  The project will continue to Luputa, a city of 160,000.
The chief of Tshiabobo, with sash and headress, with his family.  This is a great day for him.  The men of Tshiabobo have participated in digging the ditch that brought water from three springs in the hills.  They and the men from Luputa supplied the labor, laying pipe, filling in the trenches, in order to have the water in their village.

The bowery is full of people attending the ceremony from as far away as Kinshasa.

President and Sister Binene of the Luputa District of the LDS Church listen to the opening skit.  President Binene will address the crowd.

The governor of the province, Kasai Oriental, addresses the crowd.  He says that the government has the money but not the will to do what the Church has done.  He says the Church acts as Christians, working for others.
The Chief visits the water station.

The governor cuts the ribbon to the first station.

Palm fronds decorate the entrance to the water stations and are also used to decorate the way into the village.

The water stations have great pressure while Tshiabobo is the only villge on the system, but they should have sufficient water for years to come if the water committee functions correctly.  They must determine a way to have people pay just a little bit for the water in order to maintain the system.  One pipe costs about $500 -- a fact that really surprised the committee.