Monday 30 November 2009

In Between Teams

Here's a picture of the Novemer team with some of the children at King George. They left us just over a week ago. We had a couple of days rest at Banana Island at the end of last week and now we are getting ready for the December team.

I've just about got my voice back now and I've recovered from the cold.

This week we are hoping to take delivery of the minibus that was shipped over and get it registered so that we can use it for the next team.

Monday 23 November 2009

Hassan's Eye

This is Hassan, he got hit in the eye with a stick while he was playing with his friend. His father bought him to see us 2 weeks after the incident. He's in a lot of pain and can't see out of the eye (the left one). We arranged for him to be seen at the Kissy Eye Hospital. He's seen a specialist who is giving treatment which will continue until 14th December, then they will operate on the eye. We don't know yet if it will be possible to save his sight. His father is going to contact me again in a week to let me know how Hassan is getting on.

Sunday 22 November 2009


The foundations for the main building at the City of Rest site at Grafton have been laid! The November team achieved a lot on the work site and I think they enjoyed working with the builders. The team left on Friday - the photo on the left was taken just before the team left site for the last time.

When the team left on Friday Jill and I waved them off in Kissy then spent the afternoon working at the team house. Yesterday I spent most of the day catching up with office work, and today we had a really nice day at Bureh Beach.

Saturday 21 November 2009

Baby Margaret

Last Wednesday the lady who looks after Abu came to see me because her baby was ill and she couldn't afford treatment for her, I was able to give her enough money to get the baby to hospital for treatment - it was thought that she had malaria. On Thursday the mother came back again in a real state because the baby (Margaret) was having convulsions.........we arranged for her to go back to the hospital and she was put on a drip and kept in overnight. Sadly Margaret died in the early hours of Friday morning - she was 8 months old. My heart goes out to Margaret's family and I wish there was more I could do to comfort them.

I don't know what else to say for now......

Saturday 14 November 2009

Digging In

The team have cleared the land where the main building will be going at Grafton and have almost finished digging the foundations - the picture shows some of our ladies getting on with the job.

Tomorrow we will be going to Church in Kissy then spending the afternoon on Bureh Beach.

The boy with the burnt hand (Mohamed) had his operation earlier this week and I'm waiting to hear how he's doing. If he's not back in Kissy by the time the team go Jill and I are thinking of going out to Lunsar during our time off to see him and check on his progress.

I've caught a stinker of a cold and have almost lost my voice - but it's holding out so far!

Tuesday 10 November 2009


Margaret is a little girl I met in April when she was badly burned by boiling water. The pictures below show how bad her burns were and how well she healed. Ever since I first met her she has cried whenever she sees me....I think because she associated me with the pain of the treatment for her burns. Today was a different story - when she saw me she shouted my name and ran into my arms for a cuddle!! After a long and tiring day it was just what I needed and really made my day - I'm so glad she's finally forgiven me!

Monday 9 November 2009

The Team Have Arrived

The November team arrived safely tonight and we transferred them by ferry over to the Hotel 5/10 in Kissy. The team will be working mostly at the City of Rest site in Grafton, we are going to start work there tomorrow with some land clearance in preparation for the foundations for the main building.

Sunday 8 November 2009

Mohamed's Hand

This is Mohamed, a couple of months ago he was playing with his friends when he fell into a fire. His hand was badly burnt - his index finger and middle finger are fused together and the next to smallest finger is fused to his palm. His whole hand is twisted inwards towards his wrist. His mother bought him to see me this afternoon as she'd been advised that he needs an operation to open up his hand. The operation would normally cost 600,000le (£100), but the hospital have agreed to take 400,000le (about £67) - this is still far more than his mother can afford, and this amount is just for the operation itself, the aftercare will be on top of that. The family have been trying to get the money together so that Mohamed can have his operation and one of their neighbours suggested I might be able to help. Luckily just before I left the UK a very kind couple gave me some £ to be used as and where I felt it would be of the best benefit, and I just knew when I saw Mohamed that the money should be used for his operation. We've arranged for the little boy to be taken to the hospital on Monday so that the operation can be arranged. Please pray for Mohamed as he goes for this operation.

Friday 6 November 2009

10% or 90%?

Here's Abu in a new outfit that I bought over for him.......his t-shirt says '10% Good, 90% Trouble' - he thought it was really funny and that I'd had it printed specially for him!! I think he looks really good! He's decided that he's going to save the outfit for Christmas (he only realised today that I'll be here for Christmas and he got quite excited about it!).

Thursday 5 November 2009


I was left speechless today.....something that doesn't happen very often. I visited the Mahaniam home for disabled children in Grafton to drop off some rice and let them know that I'm back in the country. A familiar looking girl in a school uniform appeared in the doorway and very slowly made her way towards me. I had to do a double take - it was Ramatu and she was walking!! She has joined the school in class 3 (3rd year primary school). She is looking so well - she was able to walk from the doorway to me very precariously unassisted!! Then after saying hello she walked back to school with the help of a pair of crutches.
I was so suprised - I had to keep looking at her to make sure it really was her!! The progress she has made since March is amazing and I'm so proud of her for the strength and determination she has shown - she's an amazing girl.

Wednesday 4 November 2009

Back in Sierra Leone......again

I arrived back in Sierra Leone on Sunday night with Jill - we stayed at the Mahera Beach Hotel in Lungi the night we arrived then got the first ferry over to Kissy on Monday morning.

We went straight to the staff flat to unpack then started work getting ready for the first team who'll be arriving this Sunday.

It was great to see the kids again. Abu has been great although I've not seen much of him yet as he started at a new school in September so he's not around the compound so much.....he does seem to be staying out of trouble though which is definately an improvement!!

Yesterday we visited the Abdulai Hosetta school for special needs children - they were so welcoming and it was lovely to spend a little time with them. We're going to be visiting there with the team next week - the children will be so excited!!

Today we spent some time going around the King George VI home for the elderly chatting to the residents - then I had to head over to town to sort out my internet access and have a meeting with a couple of other charities to make sure that we're not duplicating our efforts.

Tomorrow we are going to Hastings to review the new accomodation block, then popping in to drop off some rice at Mahanaim, followed by a quick 'hello' at St George Foundation....after that we'll head over the mountain road into town to get the remaining shopping needed for the first team and to stock up on first aid supplies. We're also going to call in at City of Rest to introduce Jill and catch up with Heleen - it's going to be a busy day!!