|After reading my last entry (Clinical Impressions and Depressions), I realize I have not painted the full picture. Our volunteer experience was not only in the district hospital, but also doing "outreach".
Outreach was twice a week, and we would get picked up in a 4x4 vehicle, and head out into the grasslands with another local nurse. We would drive out to different villages each time, and sometimes these villages were remote (eg. 2 hours in the bush...some of the bridges were washed out and we'd have some fun off-roading adventures ;)
When we'd arrive at the designated village, we would often have a huge group of women and children waiting for our arrival. A scale would be hung in the nearest tree, and the babies and kids would each be weighed. Shaun and I helped graphing the childrens' growth, and referring those who were losing weight (various nutrition and counselling programs for the parents).
We'd also help with immunizing the babies and children, as well as doing prenatal assessments and administering "family planning" - that is, birth control. Sometimes we were inside a building, such as a school or a mud hut, and sometimes outside under the Acacia tress).
The best part of the day comes at the end, when some women from each community cook for us, and we all sit down and eat (with our hands) the nsima and vegetables that were prepared. It was also so nice to be able to talk and share a meal with these people, before the long drive back to Lundazi.
Here are some pictures of these experiences.