March 2012 Project

From April 2011 through March 2012, we worked with a group of seniors from Amy Biehl Charter High School in Albuquerque, NM to help them fulfill their obligation to perform community service as part of their graduation requirements. We spent the better part of their school year conducting project planning, fundraising, skills workshops, team-building, and travel preparation activities leading up to our March 2012 service project in Kenya.

As part of our preparation activities, the ABHS students participated local service work as part of a Habitat for Humanity home-building project in Albuquerque. They also spent a rain-soaked weekend honing their teamwork skills in the Pecos Wilderness, an experience they all attributed to their sense of cohesion and trust as a group.

Traveling with us were two adult volunteers: John Grace, the Vice President of New Mexico’s IATSE Local 480, film industry mentor, and instructor at Albuquerque’s DATA Charter High School; and Maureen ‘Alex’ Wright, a retired Naval officer and cousin to Christina Berlin.

We traveled to Kenya in mid-March, with a day-long layover in Amsterdam where we visited the Anne Frank House Museum. Upon arriving in Kenya, we immediately set to work on the Kiima Kimwe Health Clinic. We installed doors and windows and leveled the floor. We also put up face boards and rain gutters in preparation for setting up the water storage tank. Finally, we carved a stair case out of the side of the hill to make access from the church grounds above easier.

The work was challenging, and we encountered a few setbacks along the way, but we pulled together as a group and made tremendous progress. Leaders from all over the area visited us during our work week, and news spread to Machakos Town of our efforts on the clinic. The day after our departure, the World TB Day Celebration was held at the clinic site to acknowledge the work we had done and to bring community awareness to the soon-to-be-opened clinic. 28 healthcare practitioners from Machakos District spent the entire day at the site educating people on health issues and vaccinating hundreds children against TB, Yellow Fever, and Typhoid.

March 2012 Project Team March 2012 Project Team

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