Success!!! Mozambique day one is complete! This place is out of this world incredible. This is the Africa you go to see. Ponta D’ Ouro is a hidden gem. Coming in on a sandy road and seeing the small houses and shops was exciting enough, but the town and the people are just what we love to see. Everyone is friendly, welcoming and the entire place is a rural village set on beautiful bay scenery. It takes about ten minutes to get through the whole town, but it’s gorgeous.
We woke up to a homemade breakfast worth of eggs, toast, cereal and coffee. It felt like we were home because the house we’re staying at is very comfortable. We sat outside on the patio and enjoyed the morning together before we toured the town. After the tour, we ventured to the school. When you hear that 1,000 kids go to the school, it doesn’t quite register until you see it. There were kids everywhere. There are so many that it is equivalent to two of my high schools put together. The older students come in the morning for learning and the younger students come in the afternoon. They only have a certain amount of teachers and classrooms, so they have to split the time evenly. Past ROV groups have built all of the newer classrooms, and it’s incredible to see how much it has grown in just a few short years. Man, it still needs so much more help though. You can tell that the old classrooms were worthless, but thank god for the work that has been done thus far.
Anthea taught her English lesson to the kids this morning. They really love her here. She’s teaching 6th and 7th grade English out of a book. She thinks they’re making lots of progress, and is excited to continue teaching for the next two weeks! English is such an important skill for these kids to have because knowing English gives them a better chance of bringing themselves out of poverty in their futures. We are so glad to have her here to teach!!
Our project this season is to finish the toilets. Before ROV, the kids would go do their business behind the decrepit classrooms, in the sand, which created a disgusting muck of sewage in the sand. There are currently some temporary toilets, but even those are repulsive. We went inside one and we couldn’t even bare the smell or sight of it. We are finishing up the plumbing system and installing flushing toilets for the girls and boys. I can’t even explain how essential it is to get this up and running as quickly as possible.
This morning, we mixed lots of cement for plastering the septic tank, the outside of the toilets and for making bricks. Those jobs took us all day, but we got so much done. Maddi is now a professional plasterer. Ricky, Sasha, and Anthea are professional brick makers, while Chris is very good at demolition. He had to bang holes into the walls to make room for the plumbing tubes. I am, unfortunately crippled due to a falling accident recently, but I am always there for moral support. It was definitely a successful day, and we are all determined to finish these toilets by the end of the two weeks here!!
As a reward for all their hard work, we stopped to get some soft serve ice cream and a drink at the beach. Anthea braved the cold and took as dip in the water, but none of us could bring ourselves to go in. It was a very nice way to end the day. This evening, we ate dinner and played lots of games together. Boy, do we loveeee our games!!
Tomorrow we’re continuing our work and will hopefully get even more done!!