Friday, July 3, 2009

Well we made it back from Masvingo about 4:00 yesterday. We needed to get some petrol to make it back and they were out at the station in Masvingo where we can use our coupons. We thought we would try and make it but half way decided we didn't have enough so we stopped and
paid cash at a petrol station and had to pay $1.55/ltr instead of the usual $1.30. O well - we put in enough to get us home.

We loaded up with our donated food on Wed. morning - most of it was from Rob Spencer's SPAR (grocery store owned by a member of the church). He was very generous and tried to give us food to provide a balanced diet - powdered milk, bread, fruit, veggies, protein (dried soya, peanut butter and some little dried fish, and some beans). We also had arranged to pick up at a market near us but they gave us a bit of old greens (chinese cabbage and a bit of regular cabbage) - we were disappointed in what they gave. On the way out of town we stopped on the roadside and bought 20 cabbages for $10 from a young fellow -- he was pretty excited to sell that much at one time!! We also took a few bags of a high-nutrition porridge that Pres. Nield gave us.

We dropped in at the hospital unannounced as we wanted to see if they had the blankets on the beds that we took down last Saturday. They did not. They said they were putting them in their reserve storage and we told them that we had heard that the patients were cold and needed blankets now. ??? Most of the beds that we saw only had 1 blanket on them. They got a little defensive but we told them that we were just hoping that they were making use of the donations for the patients. They said they wanted to label them first (& that is a good idea).

Men's ward keeping warm around fire

More patients keeping warm

We gave them the food and they were thrilled to get it. We then told them that we had $200 that someone had donated (The Taylors) and that we would buy more food and bring it out the next day.

Delivering donated food to the mental health hospital

Vegetables for hospital

Oranges and soup mix

We asked the man in charge of the kitchen what they really needed and he told us they would love to have some dry yeast and some sugar (they had flour but no yeast). So we went shopping but had a hard time finding yeast. The SPAR store wouldn't sell yeast as they use all they can get in their own bakery - and they did have a huge line-up waiting to buy bread. We went to another store and they didn't have a bakery so we bought the 26 x 100gm. packages that they had. We also bought 100 kg. of sugar and spent the balance on 15 x 10 kg. bags of mealie meal (milled corn). We took it out to them and they were happy to show us that the blankets were now on the beds!!!! They were also making the mid-day meal and using vegetables etc. that we had taken them.

Cooking lunch with some of our donations

Directors at hospital and Jim - making a list of contributions

We took a couple of balls to them which they seemed to really like.

They were thrilled with the ball we gave them - they said they just need uniforms now

We also took some books to give to Vernon (I think I called him Vincent before and said he wasn't mentally handicapped but he is rather slow). He can read a little but probably not well enough. We left the books and perhaps someone will read to the patients who cannot read. They were good life-skill type stories.

Elizabeth & Vernon - checking to see if he can read before we give him some books (he can't read very well)

All in all we had a good trip down there and we feel like the directors will use the things appropriately - at least we hope so.

We took Elizabeth with us to the hospital - she joined the church about a year ago and is a really good lady. She is a social worker. She was good to take along and she enjoyed the trip because she had heard about the hospital but had never been there. She visited with the different patients.

We all took a liking to Mona Lisa, a 23 yr. old girl there. We found out that she is 5 months pregnant and that her boyfriend had dropped her off there for the second time. After the first time she went back to her family and then back to the boyfriend and he brought her back to the hospital. The nurses say she is doing better and her family visit her and are supportive. Hopefully she will get well - they had her rather sedated on Wed. when we saw her again. She is a pretty
girl with a really nice smile. We left a new-born kit with the nurse to save for her and left a note for her with it.
Mona Lisa and Elizabeth

Road coming from hospital

Gloomy day on way home from Masvingo

Semi tipped over on side of road - was there on Sunday too (Thursday today!)

We also saw another semi flipped over that had a couple of tanks on it. The edges of the roads have sharp drop-offs here and there so whether they went off (the roads aren't very wide) or whether the driver fell asleep, who knows. I wonder if they will retrieve the vehicles or just leave them there to get stripped. So many of the cars that are in accidents are just left where they are.

I had better get to work - we are trying to get a couple of initiatives written up and sent in still.

Love to all, The Bullocks

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