Good morning to you!
We went to see Pauline and baby Edson today. We gave her a newborn baby kit that we found in the Nield's container (they said we could use stuff from there). It had 4 cloth diapers, pins, an undershirt, socks, 2 bars of soap and a receiving blanket. We took 4 diapers from another kit for her as well. I don't know how the baby is really doing - he doesn't look all that good. I don't think he is out of the woods by any means. She said he is nursing and he did open his eyes but he is VERY small. They don't have much/if any food left and their landlord is after them for rent ($15/month). We don't give out money.
Actually Pauline showed up here at the office this morning to ask for rent money - she had walked here, she said. It is quite a ways for a person to walk. We told her we were planning to visit her this afternoon and that we would give her a ride home. I had Samantha, a Shona lady that works here, talk to her. We were really torn as to what we should do. After consulting with each other and with Samantha we decided to give Pauline the rent money (out of our pocket). We also talked about how Pauline was going to pay the next month's rent. She said before the baby came she sold bananas/vegetables on the side of the road but that she has no capitol to get started again. She needed $6 for that. We gave her $10 and Samantha explained to her that she had to be wise and use it to get her business started. Samantha thinks she will -- and if she doesn't then - at least we
tried to help her.
I know this sounds like it shouldn't really be a hard decision on our part but you have to realize that we have to be very careful because people will just keep coming back for more. Samantha told her that there is no more ever. Hopefully she won't come back asking (but she probably will and we will have to be strong and say 'no'). We don't want a line up of people at our door begging for money.
$25 is nothing really to us in America but.... we could give out thousands and they would just keep taking. Our gate guard has ask us for a loan - we said no. Our housekeeper and her husband, the gardener have ask us for advances on their pay and we have said no - we will pay them at the beginning of each month. (If we pay in advance then what will they do the next month, etc.) Anyway - you can see the problem. People want to be our friend and then ask for
money - if you don't give then they aren't your friend anymore. They would bleed us dry.
I hope we didn't make a mistake helping Pauline today - I guess time will tell.
The missionaries followed us out to Pauline's today and met them. They set up an appointment to go back next Thursday and teach them and left them with a pamphlet to read. They would love to get a branch going in that area. While there a lady sitting outside talked to them and said she used to go to our church and they invited her to come back. So - perhaps something good will come out of this!!
I got a b.d. card in the mail today from the R.S. presidency. That was nice. It came through fairly quickly. Also a small package from my friend Ruth. Our first mail here!!
Must run. Love, Nancy/Mom