A New Beginning

JULY 9TH AT 6:00 PM: I had slowly come to terms with the Tanzanian culture and other volunteers. Lots more volunteers came during the morning and we had a huge group lunch (IT WAS PIZZA). Everyone sat together eating the variety of pizzas and we enjoyed our time. I met many more people from different parts of the world: UK, Dubai, Canada, Brazil, Netherlands, France, and Norway. Meeting all these people from different countries was phenomenal and I felt so overjoyed getting to know them. Later, we all sat in a circle and conversed like we were best friends since childhood. No words can describe the amount of love and happiness I felt around them. Right from the start, I felt like I had another family who understood me. With jokes here and there, we laughed and smiled together until it was time to go back to theHaus.

JULY 10TH AT 5:00 PM: It was the start of the medical program. I got to know the other volunteers in the two-week program and it was amazing.

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Two-Week Volunteers: THE GIRLS

All of them were extraordinary and I couldn’t have asked for anything more. We all bonded straight away: from the countries we were from to guy drama back in our hometown. Not only that, but I got to know some of the other guys in my program. They were a little bit on the funnier side.

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Jaymin and Harry

It was a marvelous start to my African trip. Soon, we went to a hospital clinic around 2:00 pm in Ngarenaro, Mt. Meru. It was a truly new experience. Everything there was totally different from the US clinics. In the maternal clinics, there were pregnant ladies about to be in labor on one side of the room while ladies with newborn babies on the other. All these ladies idealized natural birth and I was truly stunned by their bravery and strength to undergo that. No anesthesia was given to them and it was incredible to see their fortitude in action. On the other hand, many of the clinic’s rooms were unhygienic and in some rooms there was blood out in the open. More attention needs to be brought to these problematic situations in order to provide a healthy hospital area for patients.

JULY 11TH AT 11:00 PM: In the morning, we all visited a surgical theatre known as Wanjara Clinic with the guidance of Dr. Kway. In the surgical area, it was very shocking to see a small surgical bed with barely any surgical tools in the room.

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Surgical Area

Afterwards, we had a Swahili/cultural workshop at the Projects Abroad Office and it was an enjoyable class. We learned greetings and the basic sentences to communicate with other people in Tanzania. We even learned songs during our time there.

Hujambo?

Hujambo bwana/bibi?

Habari gana?

Nzuri sana! (x2)

Wageni,

Mwakaribishwa,

Tanzania yetu,

Hakuna matata! (x2)

Later in the day, we had dinner with the host family, and all the volunteers living there, the two-week and four-week, had a marvelous night playing games!

Upendo,

Sophia Cao

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