Blogs from Kinshasa, West, Congo Democratic Republic, Africa

Advertisement

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa March 9th 2014

Over the last ten days, I've spent nights in Kinshasa, Maluku... nplanes as well as in Bangkok and Hua Hin. Should I say it's business as usual... or rather...this is a pretty small world. As you can guess, I'm not in Congo for tourism purposes. This year, I will spend over 2 months in the DRC, all this over two weeks at a time spent between Lubumbashi and Kinshasa. It has been over 4 years since I first come to DRC on a regular basis, making this place some kind of a second home for me. I won't move full time to Congo anytime soon, but it's good to have so many friends in such a place. My first week-end in Lubumbashi was spent playing golf with friends. But for my second week-end in Kinshasa, it ... read more
Fleuve Congo
Cutties...
Ines and Tiffany

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa September 15th 2012

It's not everyday that I found the possibility...and the time to take some pictures in Congo, so here is a little entry. I have to admit it, these pictures are actually less than impressive. They have changed the law few months ago, to actually allow taking pictures in the street...but it's still not a great idea to try your luck at it. I've spent the last two weeks between Kinshasa and Lubumbashi, the two biggest cities of RDC. And as internet is so slow in the country, I'm actually uploading my pictures in between two airports on my way home...in Johannesburg and Sao Paolo...it's a small world! I've reached a pretty interesting point in my life...when it comes to people asking me...."Where are you from?" Well, I have a European passport, and I grew up in ... read more
Lubumbashi, on the move...
taxi ride...and that's not the worst...look closer...
right in the middle of downtown...

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 31st 2012

Monday night our PACE program closed with a joyful celebration in the assembly hall. Each student was presented with a certificate attesting to her completion of the program. As each came up to receive her certificate, there was much clapping and singing . . . and a bit of dancing! Then they presented the PACE teachers with lovely Congolese carvings. We had a lovely dinner right there in the hall, followed by word games, and lots of singing and dancing. Enjoy the photos of the Sisters with their certificates!... read more
Closiing Celebration
Closiing Celebration

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 30th 2012

Over the weekend we were on the road to Lemfu and Kisantu to visit the Sisters of Notre Dame and to see something of their ministries there. Kisantu is about 40km south of Kimwenza, our home base, and Lemfu is about 18km farther. Sister Marie Dominique, the education director for the Congo Province, was our guide. Gerard, our driver, navigated some very challenging roads to get us safely to our destinations. The SNDs have been at Lemfu since 1905. There are pre-primary, elementary and secondary schools there, as well as a hospital, including a maternity ward. The Lemfu mission is also one of the four sites in Congo for the photovoltaic project. We saw the inner workings of this project, which provides electricity and internet service to the whole compound. The Sisters also host a cyber-cafe ... read more
Lemfu
Lemfu
Lemfu

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 30th 2012

During our weekend on the road, we visited Kisantu and stayed overnight there Saturday night. The Sisters of Notre Dame went to Kisantu in 1900 and established schools -- pre-primary, elementary, secondary -- which have become very well known and respected in the Kisantu diocese. More than 1000 students attend these schools. There are also plans to build a college. Kisantu holds an important place in the history of the Congolese province of the SNDs. A poignant experience during our stay was a visit to the cemetery where several Belgian Sisters are buried. We prayerfully remembered the countless Belgian Sisters who came to Congo as missionaries and sowed the seeds of the present Congolese Province. While in Kisantu we walked a bit in the beautiful Botanical Garden, established in 1900 by a Jesuit Brother, Justin Gillet. ... read more
Kisantu
Kisantu
Kisantu

Advertisement

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 29th 2012

In the liturgical calendar, this past Thursday was the feast of St. Ann. As we were coming into the dining room for supper, the Sister-students sang and presented me with a bouquet of flowers. I hope you enjoy the video snippets. They're a little choppy but they'll will give you the flavor of the "surprise."... read more

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 26th 2012

Clean drinking water is a precious commodity that we take very much for granted in the U.S. In Congo, as in many African countries, the people have to work hard for it. Here in Kimwenza the Sisters of Notre Dame have an underground well. Rain water is also collected in large metal containers. After water is boiled in large pots, it is set aside until it has come to room temperature. Then the Sisters place it in a container with eleven filters. The boiled and filtered water then goes into bottles and is stored in the refrigerator. Whenever I am enjoying a glass of cold water on a hot afternoon, I try to remember with gratitude all the care that has gone into making it safe for us to drink.... read more
Water
Water

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 26th 2012

In the last eight days, I have learned many new uses for the humble bucket. "Bucket List" has taken on a new meaning for me. In our house here at Kimwenza, we are blessed to have running water -- cold, but not hot. Down the hall from my room, there is a hot water heater with a faucet. So every night and every morning, I take my bucket there to fill it with hot water. We have showers (with cold water), but not bathtubs. So the bucket filled with a mixture of hot and cold water provides a daily bath/shower. I'm getting good at dousing myself from my bucket! It's also great for washing clothing and carrying it out to the clothesline. And for soaking tired feet -- it can't be beat. Of course, the bucket ... read more
The Bucket List
The Bucket List
The Bucket List

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 24th 2012

A few days ago we visited the farm that the Sisters have on the compound at Kimwenza. When Sister Claudine Dumbi was studying agriculture at the Jesuit college in Kimwenza, she needed to do a practicum. She requested some money from her community and bought 200 chickens. That was in 1999-2000. Twelve years later they now have 1500 chickens, 100 or so rabbits, a small flock of baby turkeys and lots of vegetables. The farm provides not only income for the Sisters but also jobs for local people.... read more
At the Farm
At the Farm
At the Farm

Africa » Congo Democratic Republic » West » Kinshasa July 23rd 2012

English is the language of choice these days. Today we asked the Sisters to try to speak English at meals, and we teachers will spread out and sit among them in the dining room. Meanwhile Maureen and I are each teaching two sections of English, and we meet each section twice a day. Maureen has the Cuvilly and Namur groups, and I have the Amiens and Ghent groups. We're working on verb tenses, pronouns, prepositions, new vocabulary and pronunciation. The Side by Side materials -- texts, workbooks, picture cards and CDs -- are excellent, and the students seem to be enjoying them. Today I gave my students a little written homework -- to write about themselves, their families and their interests. When I asked them to send it to me by email, they applauded! Here is ... read more




Tot: 0.232s; Tpl: 0.009s; cc: 8; qc: 75; dbt: 0.0566s; 75; m:apollo w:www (50.28.60.10); sld: 3; ; mem: 6.5mb