Sunday, February 16, 2014

Danner Update

written by our guests, Dr. Dee and Janet, who are here for about a month providing dental training, dishwashing services and comic relief. (See photo of Dee)

Habari Gani?  ("Hello how are you?" in KiSwahili) or Jambo!

The proper response is: Safi (Safee) which means "clean".

 So we find ourselves in Tanzania! We left our home on a Wednesday Jan. 29 at 9:30 am and arrived at City of Hope on Friday at 7:30pm.  Where did we lose a day? We did spend one night in a guest house in Nairobi, Kenya; however, we arrived there at 1 am and left at 5:30 am. We have heard the guest house is a beautiful place, however it was dark when we arrived and dark when we left!

Entrance to City of Hope
You can imagine on the 10 hour bus ride, I began to wonder why I was doing this. Talk about being tired! We had been told which town the bus stops in to get off and purchase some lunch, however we never knew which town we were in, so we missed lunch! The good news is that I had purchased two bags of Chex snacks at an airport, so we had that and water. This is a tea drinking country, luckily I had brought instant coffee that had cream and sugar already in it.  Wow, did that taste good in the morning!

Someone was to meet us at the end of the bus trip, and we knew the name of the town. Apparently the bus driver was picking up extra passengers and dropping them off where they wanted, so every time the bus stopped, we asked another passenger,is this the right town? I was a little anxious because this was the first time Dee and I had traveled alone. We had one problem after another and could not get our phone to work, so we had no way to contact anyone if something didn't go as planned.

Well everything did go as planned, we met our gracious host at the last bus stop, did the necessary paperwork to cross the border from Kenya into Tanzania and we were on the last leg of the trip to the City of Hope; dead tired. It was dark, the roads were dirt with potholes everywhere. People walking,kids playing, and motorbikes flying past, and our driver also going very fast! I think they could hear us coming and everyone flew out of our path! The most I would have gone was about 10mph on that road! So here we are flying through the country and all of a sudden he turns left and it was like another world. Beautiful flower pots, flowers everywhere and a beautiful painted gate with a roof over it! We passed through the gate and there were 100 children standing there singing to us that they were glad we were there and they were happy to see us! I can't explain to you the feeling of joy, peace and happiness that instantly came over me! It just couldn't have been any better, then all the children came to us wanting to tell us their names and shake hands. It just couldn't have been any better!

Banana Grove 
Walking to the Clinic.
We waited until Monday to start our class on dentistry. We have three women and two men and they all seem to be brillant. They learn very quickly. I have finished teaching them how to do fillings, now we just need patients for them to practice on. As soon as they have had some experience with fillings, Dee will begin teaching extractions.

One student was pregnant. I think it was on Thursday they said she could not come, she had some pain. She had her baby that night and told Dee she would be  back to our class on Monday! Can you imagine? She had her baby and 20 minutes later was on her way home!

The food has been great,except for the rocks in the rice. And if there is going to be one rock, it will always be in my rice!They are so small, you can't see them to pick them out.

If you ever have trouble waking up, take a cold shower in the morning as we are doing. Guarunteed, you will be awake, instantly!  Glad I brought biodegradable soap, so it is not too hard to rinse off.

Downtown Ntgatcha. Also known as "keep left".
Amani Hospital (the City of Hope clinic)
Cow xing
We definitely learn to appreciate all the nice things we have in the U.S.! I did our laundry today, quite a process in buckets and hand wringing. Dish washing seems to take at least one and a half hours with two people doing it. Today church was late because the kids had to go to the river to get water, we were running low. You should see them carry back these big buckets of water on their heads without even holding them!

City of Hope grows a lot of their own food, so the kids are up at 6am every day to work on the farm before going to school. They don't have high school at City of Hope yet, so the older ones have to walk 1 1/2 hours each way to school, that is a long day. Everything is so organized, and the children all seem to be so well behaved, friendly, and happy. I have only seen two adults in charge of them, one for the boys and one for the girls. They give a lot of responsibility to the older children.

Destiny Primary School, City of Hope 
Please pray for good health for everyone here, patients to give our students good experience while we are here (we were pleasantly surprised when we screened the orphans that generally their teeth were in great shape.  They have a regimented brushing program and most were brushing very well).  Also pray that all the orphans have a strong relationship with Christ knowing that he will protect them and love them.

I almost forgot to tell you, one of our students is so excited about learning this dentistry he is already talking about possibly going to dental school!

Dental patients
Examining the Children.
Cooking ugali. (ground maize mash)
I hope this letter has found you well and full of His peace.


Janet and Dee

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