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Recent and forthcoming events

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The clinic at Simooya was opened in October 2011 but the official opening has been postponed until 2013.  The clinic is very busy and is proving a wonderful asset for the local communities.  The clinic contains facilities for medical treatment, maternity care and accommodation for patients who are awaiting transport to hospital.  Towards the end of 2012 the site was connected to mains electricity.
Nurse's house, kitchen and other structures.                    A three classroom school is now being
                                                                                            constructed nearby
We have recently been reliably informed that the construction of the teacher's house at Kaputula has now reached gable end level.
Funding has been sent to Salem for the refurbishment of the boys'  accommodation and for the purchase of more desks.
 Visit to Zambia 2012.
Bob and Moira visited Zambia between 8th June and 5th July 2012.  This was a very successful visit and several new initiatives were started.
We arrived to find much work had taken place on the school.  The slab had been laid and the walls had been built up to the base of the windows.  During our first visit to the site we were able to ascertain what was needed to move on to the next stage.  This was basically door and window frames, verandah poles and cement for the brickwork together with accessories such as brickforce wire to hold the bricks together and polythene sheeting for the dampcourse on the verandah.  The clinic was running well but the nurse's house needed some extra work, namely a brick outdoor kitchen as the wind was blowing through the temporary pole and thatch structure she was using.  There was a need for a small cover over the back door to stop the rain coming in and some attention was needed to the foundation wall where bitumen paint and some plastering was needed.  A hole in the toilet also needed attention as the nurse was concerned about snakes getting in where there were some holes showing in the concrete.
 The nurse's house and outdoor kitchen.
After visiting our other projects we returned to Simooya about 10 days later to find almost all the work had been done as promised so we were able to go out and purchase materials to take the walls up to roof level.  Wages for the bricklayer were left in the hands of the village committee. 
The school at Simooya at the end of our visit
Milden will be visiting the village in August and our hope is he will be able to move onto roofing before the rains start in November.
Much thanks are due to Clive Wixley of the neighbouring farm who has provided all the bricks for the school and has helped with the provision of water bowsers and the use of his welding equipment.
After discussions with the Headteacher and representatives of the school and village community we were able to put plans in place and provide the materials for the first stage of a much needed and long awaited house for the Headteacher.  Once photographic evidence is provided to show this stage has been completed arrangements are in hand for funds to be provided for the next stage of the building.
Moira starting the foundations for the headteacher's house.
A donation was handed over on behalf of Hockley Heath Baptist Church in the UK and will be used for the purchase of more seating.  The church members pointed out a new brick built pit toilet for the church which which was the result of previous donations.
The new brick built toilet at Kafubu
The school opened last year is now in use with three unqualified teachers living on the site, two of whom are using one of the classrooms for living accommodation.  Funds were left for the building of a third pit toilet.  Once this work is completed and photographic evidence received plans are in hand for the construction of a teacher's house. The villagers are keen for pupils who are attending other schools to be educated at Chilumba and it is hoped that qualified staff will soon be in place.  Only very young children are receiving education at Chilumba at the present time.
 The new school building at Chilumba which is now in use.
Kabwe Prisoners.
Unfortunately Father Bowen was in Ireland at the time of our visit so we were unable to provide our usual supply of items for the prisoners.  Father Bowen is hoping to return to Ireland permanently in the future, but has given us the name of a contact with whom we should be able to continue our service to the prisoners in the future.
A visit to Salem showed there was much need for support.  Some of the boundary wall has collapsed and there is a need to improve the dormitory facilities for the street kids who are boarded there.  Some pipe work has been stolen from the old sanitary blocks and there is much need for further repairs and renovation.  The school continues to thrive but has not yet become an examination centre which should provide some income for the organisation.  We have asked Mr. Mbai the director to provide us with a list of priorites so we can consider giving further help. 
A warm greeting as always from some of the pupils.
Coffee Morning Nov. 10th 2012
A coffee morning held on 10th November attracted friends and supporters from Wenhaston, Halesworth and  neighbouring villages with representatives from no less than six churches including Anglicans, Roman Catholics, Methodists and URC members.  It was a wonderful social occasion as well as an important fund raising event which produced over £500 for Starfish funds.  Our very grateful thanks to all who supported us and especuially to all the willing helpers who gave of their time and energy to make it such a success.  Our special thanks to Joan Horbury for a special cake to mark the occasion and for her help on the day.