We mobilised volunteers from our local club and with their help, built Falace and her daughter a new house - it’s small, but has two windows! She’s delighted. Additionally, discussing her situation with our staff, we decided to introduce a Chicken Project. We built a chicken khola, then supplied hybrid black austrope chicks, which should provide eggs in 6 months. This food will help them nutritionally, but as the flock develops, give them a small business in eggs and meat, enabling Falace to feed, clothe and educate her daughter in the future.
We first met Falace last year, when we helped her re-roof her home temporarily before the rains came. She suffers from leprosy which left her too disabled to dig her field to provide food for herself, and her 10 year old daughter. She needed a new house as her current one was almost as vulnerable as she was, and terrorised by termites. She was also hungry - she hadn’t eaten for days.
Sylvia & Claire came to visit us from the UK, and while there, Mary, one of the Play Centre mums, came to the office. She asked for transport to hospital for TB and ARV treatment. She also had nothing to eat, so we went to the market, bought some food and took her home to see the conditions she lived in. Her hut was small, dark and empty, with hardly any clothing, or bedding. She lives there with her baby, which relies on OHP milk, her mother and several other children. She’s sick with AIDS but has greatly perked up on treatment, so we gave her seeds to plant a vegetable garden and a goat to start a small business.
Falace (right), her daughter,
and some of the volunteers who helped build her house.
Returning home one day, as we parked the car we noticed what we thought was a bundle of rags on the floor. On investigation we found it was Dorothy, weak, dehydrated and having trouble breathing. We took her to the local health facility, then on through the darkness to hospital.
Slowly recovering, she spent a fortnight there so we supplied food and also supervised the care of her children through our volunteer network. She’s now been stabilised ready to begin an ARV programme, so there’s every hope she’ll regain a level of health and vigour and be able to care for her family once again.
Elderly widow, Doris, the two orphans she cares for, and her collapsed house, currently being replaced by OHP and volunteers
Dorothy has featured heavily this trip. Back in 2005 hers was our first house rebuild, and we have been in contact ever since.
At that time she was suffering with TB, but over the months transporting her to hospital brought better health, and so we financed a small business for her. She worked hard and succeeded until she became ill again. This pattern repeated until this trip, when she had confirmation she was HIV+.
Fanny - a frail elderly widow, sick, weak and hungry, is struggling to care for 2 orphans. Nsima is the staple food, just a thick maize porridge, but she hadn’t had any for 2 months. She couldn’t afford to buy maize and wasn’t strong enough to grow it. All she’d eaten in that time was water and any fruits she managed to find in the Bush. OHP helped with food, clothing, funded medical care and uniforms for her girls, so they can return to school.
Individuals make up society
This is page 3 Summer trip 2008