by Jess Cropsey
One of the more important objectives for this two months at Kibuye (before diving into medical work in January) is to get to know people in the local community and at the hospital. We recognize the importance of relationships, particularly in this culture, and we are also aware that an influx of a large group of foreigners might make some people uncomfortable. So, we’re trying to be intentional about building relationships. This can take various forms.
Rachel & Alyssa have both given lectures (in French!) to the midwives and nursing students who are currently at the hospital. Others have had planning meetings with administrators at the hospital and at the university.
For some of us, athletic events are an appealing way to get to know people.All of us (including the kids) have taken at least one visit to watch the drumming class which happens every afternoon after school (and lasts for hours). It’s fun to listen to them from our apartments.
Visiting the construction sites of our new homes is another enjoyable activity, and there are plenty of workers with whom we can practice some Kirundi. Pictured below is the McLaughlin house which has made a lot of progress this past week. The Cropsey house is also under construction, but not as far along. The other houses will be built after these two are finished. Jason, Carlan, and John have all purchased their own hoes so that they can join in from time to time.
Today, a contingent of the team paid visits to several of the local community leaders. Apparently, there is a proper order for all these things (start at the top and work your way down), so we’re thankful for the nationals here who can offer us guidance.
Please continue to pray for us in these first few months as we establish relationships and continue with language learning, both of which are crucial for long-term life and ministry here.