Published: August 31st 2009June 6th 2009
Some shots from my recent visit to Sierra Leone.
I just realized that I put these up here ages ago but I never wrote any provocative and witty text like I usually do! I don't actually have the energy for that so I will let the photos speak for themselves....if a photo is worth 1,000 words, then you should be able to come up with about 90,000 words of your own after seeing all these pictures.
I was there to conduct a health and nutrition workshop and took a few field trips to visit sites where my friend Joan Williams runs a ministry called Joshua International http://joshuaintl.org//index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1 . I took these photos for her.
She runs Sunday schools, feeding programs and is in the process of building a regular school and medical clinics. The church in Atlanta (Victory World Church) supports her and they conduct several mission trips each year. There are three sites. The most alarming of those are in Kroo Bay. I've visited quite a few slums with my work in several countries, but this one really affected me. I think it is the standing water that freaked me out so much and the women picking
through the filth to see if they can find bottles to sell, the children crossing with the pigs, and people washing clothes just beside someone defecating. The entire scene is quite alarming. I'm told the bridge walkway was built by Save the Children (a good investment) I would say. The whole lower level gets flooded each rainy season as does the church and school. You can see the sandbags all lined up to prevent water from coming into the camp.
Notice the creative building materials. I was told that sometimes up to 20 people can stay in each one of those little makeshift shacks!
Such beautiful little faces, and they were all so respectful when I entered the class. They all stand, and greet me and smile and sing! It makes my heart happy to see the women cooking and serving, and the teachers engaged with the children. Men and women alike are very dedicated to seeing these children have better lives.
At the end you will see my series that I call "Shacks and Satellites"...these are the things that make me wonder how much we are dealing with can be attributed to a lack of resources,
and how much is directly related to priorities. You will see some of these places have 2 and even 3 TV dishes! There are shacks made from grass, metal siding, old car parts, even plastic tarps...but they have the TV dishes! You see folks emerging from such structures talking on their cell phones. These are things that make you go....'Hummm....."
There are more photos below