Ghana blog - Day 6
Phil Green is on the ground in Ghana for the Wheels for the World distribution - he's bringing us a daily blog from the trip. Catch up on all the entries by following this link to our Wheels blog page.
A routine start to the day, with breakfast the Ghanaian way.. . yes eggs, beans etc. I think you may be realising there isn’t much choice at breakfast but if you like eggs, beans etc then its great!
Will and I headed out early to sort out some banking needs and to try and get some mobile broadband sorted. Will also had a few issues at the bank so please pray for this as we will need to pay for the hotel at some point… either that or I’ll be doing the washing up here for the next 20 years to pay off the bill.
So we were a little late heading off to Dzolokpuita (don’t ask me to pronounce it, I have no idea!) We were told it was only 20 mins away but the team were wondering if that really meant 20 mins or the African equivalent i.e. an hour or so. It was however really only about 20 mins away! So the team got straight to it... The people there were a lot calmer and more patient than at Kpando. It’s amazing that some people who hadn’t registered stayed all day to see if we could help, including a little boy called Kofi, more on him later.
There were lots of children today it seemed… seeing them really has an impact on me. We had Edith, Dorothy, Laurence and Kofi that I remember today. Most of the time they were always smiling and wanting to interact - It’s just so easy to want to stop and play with them rather than actually get on and fit them in a chair etc.
In terms of lunch I’m not sure I have mentioned in Ghana this typically consists of rice and chicken. Reninca came to me today and said that lunch was cheese and pickle sandwiches. I got really excited at the thought of that, well up to the point when the word gullible appeared in my mind and Reninca revealed she was teasing me! So rice and chicken it was! Reninca is getting her own back for my teasing.
I was helping Katherine making a makeshift splint out of a plastic bottle and duct tape - We were doing our recycling bit! Quite often we have to think laterally to come up with ways of modifying chairs etc and with very little resources we do what we can.
At the end of today’s distribution Jill was working with the little boy, Kofi. We think he has severe learning disabilities but he was a real joy to be around. We entertained him with bubbles, sweets, shoes and a hat but in reality he was entertaining us with his constant smiling and energy. Will did some modifications on his wheelchair and he and his family left happy and grateful.
We packed up and then made the quick journey home, with a little detour on the way as we were being measured up for a traditional Ghanaian dress or a shirt which was a surprise to us all. I decided to choose the dress of course. (Not really!)
I also learned something new today - that oranges are not orange! Well not in Ghana anyway. They were green on one of the trees here but ripe they are yellow. Will bought some and essentially you just chop the top off and drink it by squeezing and sucking. Tasted just like tropicana orange back home (to me at least).
For those who want to know some facts, today we fitted 17 people in chairs, 1 buggy and 18 crutches. Tomorrow may well be more challenging as we are expecting more people and some with more severe disabilities, but the team will handle it in their normal professional manner. We do have an early start though, aiming to be there for 8am… so we plan to leave the hotel at about 7:30 - I should really get to bed a little earlier tonight so perhaps I’ll have to keep the blog a little shorter today.
I overheard a conversation where apparently some of the team are really enjoying the trip and as well as being encouraged by the way the team has just gelled together they are having fun! I won’t mention names at this point (for a small fee I might) but the perpetrators will be taken to one side and dealt with appropriately. In all seriousness though I have mentioned it before that the team just works... if anyone needs help they get it, if they need encouragement they get that too. We still have a few with slightly dodgy tummies and the team are looking after them but prayers of course welcomed still.
There were so many little moments today I just can’t capture them all. In fact I am slightly overwhelmed right now as I write this just thinking about those we met today. Those with so little yet so much... Pam mentioned in the team time about “the last shall be first” and some of those we saw today as mentioned had waited all day to get a chair or some help. Just reflecting on this now I am thanking God for all the great things that happened today and for his provision. It’s quite easy sometimes to forget God’s involvement in the little things as well as the big but right now I am thanking him.
I am thanking God for all those we saw today and I am particularly praying for those children. Perhaps you could do the same? Pray for Dorothy, Edith, Laurence, Kofi and the other children we met, and for their parents/guardians, that they know God as their rock and saviour.
The team again are safety tucked up in bed... and as I look up at the moon and stars again I’ll get ready to head off for bed too. So day 6 comes to a close and again I say night night.