Very blessed to have spent 2 nights at Michael’s cousin’s place on banks of Lake Kariba. Michael enjoyed taking us out on the lake in the boat even though he did not catch us any fish for supper…but bought bream from a local fisherman which was delicious! Sad to see the decline in Zimbabwe and the lack of development of the potential of this beautiful country!! The people are really “moedeloos” and presently compete with Congo for the position of the poorest country in the world. With the real threat of a currency change imminent, the prospects are not looking good either.
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Headed out to visit our good friends, Weston and Liz Muronzi at their home community outside Harare. We had wanted to visit them for a while and the opportunity eventually arrived!
They moved back to live and work in their home community area outside Harare about two years ago. The community is extremely poor and vulnerable as they receive no government support for food or free education, as in SA.
Weston and Liz established a non profit organization called Let’s give them Hope (after much time and effort to get through all the red tape).
They have done much in the two years since they have been back in Zimbabwe….
- Renovated their old home, which is now used for peer education and volunteer meetings.
- Built a multi- purpose hall where Weston leads a weekly church service and Adonis, their son hosts Christian movies, dance events etc. It is also used for extra tutoring for school children who need it..
- Established a chicken project that is becoming self- sustainable and supplies eggs and chickens to the community and outside stores.
- Started a goat breeding programme.
- Established a feeding programme that feeds 283 orphanned/ vulnerable children.
- Supports 80 children with their monthly school fees, who would not otherwise be able to attend school.
- Built themselves a new basic home on the property.
They are very keen to establish the following as well:
- A large vegetable garden. They have excellent quality borehole water but need a solar pump to pump the water( We have got quotes of anywhere between R15000 and R25 000 for pump and solar panels) needed for the gardens and also funds for a fence.
- A much needed clinic to serve the surrounding area. ( Weston often plays the role of “ ambulance” as he drives various medical emergencies to hospitals a distance away).
- Renovate the old home to accommodate teams coming to visit and work with the community.
Funds are always needed to enable children on the waiting list to receive food support and to attend school. (This presently costs $30 a month.) For more info go to http://www.letsgivethemhope.org/
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We met up with our good friends Toy and Michael at hot water springs near Tshipise, called Moreson, where we camped, before heading to the Beit Bridge border post into Zimbabwe the next morning. There were fortunately no queues at all but it still took us about an hour to get through all the various processes.
We spent our first night, after a long, straight 14 hour drive, (with Marc working for 12 hours on his laptop, while I drove) at Marc’s brother, Leon and Rina’s place, conveniently situated right off the N1 near Rivonia, Johannesburg. Unfortunately, Leon flew out to London earlier the same evening but Rina spoilt us and gave us a very comfortable start to our trip!
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Eventually left Stellenbosch on Friday 27th May at 9am, after a full day of packing and sorting the car. Marc only collected the drawer system which he designed and had made according to spec, two days before we left. He is so glad he did and also rather impressed with how it turned out.
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A series of posts – sharing of our preparation, lessons learnt, border crossings etc.
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