Posts Tagged ‘zomba central hospital’

Out Of Africa

Friday, October 1st, 2010

Brenda and Perry Jansen

This summation is probably for my benefit as I reflect on the incredible experience Steve and I had In Malawi and South Africa.  Safari’s are not glamorous but folk who dedicate their lives to helping others are rock stars! They are the people who captured my heart on this God-led journey.

Dr. Perry Jansen: visionary, doctor,awesome guitarist, expert in AIDS and tropical diseases, Man of God, Caring father, colleague to many, and funny.

Brenda: devoted Mom and helpmate, tender and focused heart, hostess, musical,anchor.

Nate: bright student, college bound, passionate worship leader, great guitarist, kind big brother, huge potential.

Jansen Family

Erin: emerging woman, playful kid, good writer, great big sister, sweet tooth.

Olivia: small voice, big smile, large heart, pixie, chocolate bundle of joy and delight.

Blessing: phenomenal natural talent, dependable, quiet, polite, appreciative. Bird painter extraordinaire.

Donald:  supportive friend, gracious, focused ladder climber.

Anna, Miriam, Joseph, Lester, Ida, Lucy, Octavius, Grant, John Hamilton, John Fielder, Cory, Elizabeth, Stalkers, Colleen, Maxwell, Agnes, the kids of Takambe, nurses in frilly caps, Blue-gingham girls, the 4:30 ambulance pile-in, Chijenzes, ironed shirts, short ties, and the miracles God brought about to pass every single day.

Blessing and Donald

Things I wont miss:  Goats, potholes, crumbling roads, cold showers, bicycles, smoke, power outages, no internet, pushy vendors, extreme poverty, flying for 26 hours, converting kwatcha$, nsima.

Things I did miss or will miss:  Family at home, new friends in  Malawi, wine, big salads, servants, the warmth of the people, power outages (hey candlelight is nice) the African worship, people with passion, childrens’  faces, visiting, tv-less, early nights, early mornings, MASH episodes.

Dick and Charlotte Day

In Zomba we now have fond memories of Moira and Steve Chimombo, Dick and Charlotte Day, Windeson’s cooking, Winston, Ben, Jean,Irene, Isabel,Catherine, Faith the villages of Simyoni, Kawiya,  Makundula, the Mponda School and Zomba Central Hospital.

And we took the love of wonderful folk who donated panties, time, baby caps, pencils, quilts, stencils and funds to make it all happen,  and PRAYER and those who offered it up that kept us safe and healthy!! and a husband who shared a passion and humbly served others. Love him even more.

Thank you Editor, you keep me grounded and connected.

What a journey!


Zomba Central Hospital

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

What a special opportunity to visit the “Kangaroo Ward” here.  Because of no incubators etc, preemies and super small infants are bound flesh to flesh to their moms where they stay up to a month in this heated ward.  Skin, heartbeat, breath all make a huge difference in the survival rate.  The US has even noted the exceptional success.

So we had hats and booties to give out, which they insisted be put on them. That was very touching for me.  There was even a set of twins and the grandmother was the volunteer to help the mom with the skin to skin.

The regular maternity ward had at least 40 babies and moms, in the same bed with family members camped out around them bringing meals. That was gimme, gimme, hands out stretched.   Not comfortable!

Then came the Malnutrition Ward where neglected infants and toddlers are cared for in a last ditch effort to escape the inevitable.  Some were swollen and therefore looked well-fed, but that’s just a condition associated with malnutrition. And one sight I will never erase from my mind was  a toddler covered with purple lesions…lips…eye sockets…and he was just whimpering with such pleading eyes.   The last throes of AIDS.