I have so little free time these days so I’m having trouble keeping up. So here is an update and some highlights from the last few days.
We had a team from Give International in Canada come and help us paint. They were also kind enough to donate nine sets of household supplies including mattresses, mosquito nets, pots and pans and more. I’m happy to have met and worked with these folks.
A .. nice man .. Came to us with a “problem”. Seems he was a landlord for four of the rooms (yes, making money off the poorest of the poor) and demanded we remove our buildings that were on “his” land or “help him with a little something”. He works for UNRA, the owners of the land who graciously allowed us to build. We refuses his offer and in front of witnesses, he responded, “There will be chaos and I will be behind it.” the day before he threatened the LC1 with a machete. We took him to his boss and his story changed to him “being affected by the fire” and him simply “looking out for the interest of the others affected by the fire,” himself included. Yes, he has a job, and yes he is greedy and pompous and yes I made a police report. I’ve included his picture as insurance, you know, just in case there is chaos.. Victims will know who is “behind it”.
Progress is coming rather quickly as the interior and exterior boards and the roofing all happens at once. Now with the painting, it’s quite staggering how quickly this project is moving along.
We are going to be in this for the long haul, though, because many of these people need more than a room. In a year, this village could be gone and we will need to help each family help themselves. Our goal is to ensure that each and every family is in a better spot a year from now. We’re looking at job placement, skills training, financial management and micro loans, all with the help and supervision of friends in the community that have more experience in this than we do.
Thanks again to everyone working in this project, especially our friends at Calvary and those who have supported this effort. I’m proud of the work we’re doing and excited for the future of this community.