Zambia July 2019
It has been a most amazing and delightful time in Cure hospital in Lusaka, Zambia. Lusaka is a busy, lively city with various communities spread throughout. The people are happy, and kind and the communities support the family and the individual. Traffic is rather busy, and unnerved a few of us because the steering wheel is opposite ours, and the passenger sits on the left. Besides that they drive on the left side of the road and rather speedily. There are numerous small shops and grocery stores, and a nice mall provides many choices. The currency is Kwacha. There are larger homes and many rather small, simple homes, whose walls are made from gray brick, or less sometimes. The outer- lying small villages seem to be the most poor. They have found themselves in a three-year drought, so we are praying for rain for the farmers. The main substance of food group is a pounded white maize called Nshima. Some families eat it three times per day. It is a gelatinous type of sticky goo without much taste, but it is very good with added gravy, or salt and pepper. The Zambians understand it is a needed source of energy, and they eat a lot of it. Their meats and collard green type vegetables are delicious, as well as their chicken, potatoes and rice.
We Mighty Nine are at the end of our week at CURE. This trip has transformed us. I believe all of us have strengthened our faith, and we know God’s presence is here in the lives of the children and families. The staff at CURE love God and love these children, and it shows on their faces. One can’t help being drawn into their gorgeous brown eyes, and dark beautiful skin. The staff begins the day with daily half-hour devotions, and Bible reading. What a way to begin the day! Filling yourself with God’s ever-loving presence!
There are several wards in the hospital, to include ENT, (ear, nose and throat), outpatient dept., physical therapy, children’s ward, the operating rooms (operating theater), and the Chapel. They are renovating the operating rooms and expanding them to three, so they should be ready in 3 weeks. Pastor Harold is a blessing here at CURE, as are all the staff. Due to the temporary closure of the OR’s there have been less patients, however, we have had very special days with the patients that are now here. The busiest days are the ENT clinic and the ENT outreach program (to the ends of the earth in the boondocks). Ear infections, ear perforations, and hearing loss seem to be a problem here in Zambia. Hearing loss ranges from mild to severe, and hearing aids can be given to some of the patients.
The outreach program tests, diagnoses, and treats the patients in the outlying areas. We treated over 100 in the hospital over a couple days, and 75-100 in the outlying towns. The children are so adorable and the smallest things give them joy. We’ve played soccer, thrown the small football, painted faces, made animal balloons, read Bible stories, colored, and prayed. We pray daily and often in this land.
The physical therapists are a wonder as children come in with cerebral palsy, some having had meningitis. They are flaccid, unable to walk or sit. Special chairs are made for them to support them, and help strengthen their necks, and core. Two of the patients were totally normal, until they contracted meningitis. The people amaze us every day! They are filled with genuine love for each other, and Mother’s support Mother’s. These mothers carry their children on their backs wrapped in colorful, soft cloths. They praise God in spite of the health of their children. Their faith is beyond comprehension. They sing to the heavens with praise, and it makes you want to step up to the heavens with them. Their voices are indescribably voluminous and proud, and a gift from God.
It has been our honor to be here, and has changed every one of us. We ask that God continue to love, and support these Zambians , and CURE continue to give them love, grace and peace through God’s presence.