"So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen adieu; adieu, adieu, to yieu and yieu and yieu..."
Shocked, surprised, excited, overwhelmed – we were all of these on Tuesday. Amisadai, Louisa and I (unfortunately Rachel wasn’t feeling too well so stayed behind) went to the village of Ikuka, along with Andrew, to say goodbye. Ikuka is the second village this year in which we have done a stove project. We haven’t been so personally involved in this project because we wanted Jesca to have room to lead this project without our getting in her way. It’s been a sheer delight to watch Jesca grow and develop this project in Ikuka from nothing. She really has gone from strength to strength.
So we took it all in and loved every minute of it. One thing that has characterised the Ikuka project is co-operation… in many ways it has been a model project. So we were thrilled to see so many of the group present (in the midst of their busy farming season) along with the village executive officer and the pastors of the Anglican, Pentecostal, Lutheran and Seventh Day Adventist churches. It’s been a dream come true to see villagers, the village government and the various churches all pulling together for the good of their village. So no wonder they sang for us “Unity is Power” – they have demonstrated it!
After the introductions, the sermon, the thanks from the officials and pastors, the stove secretary‘s report of the challenges and successes, it was gift time and we mean GIFT TIME! The whole group disappeared out of the room only to reappear shortly after amid shouts of joy with a goat, yes a real live GOAT! The three of us looked at each other, amazed and excited, as we readied ourselves to receive it. Then they also gave a dozen eggs, a chicken, a bucket of maize and some money. We were bowled over – such extreme generosity when we have only been a few times. It’s a real credit to Jesca and the way she has conducted the project that the villagers are so thankful.
|Bringing in the gifts!|
|Receiving the goat|
|The Ikuka Stoves Group|
So now we have a goat which Amisadai takes out to pasture every morning. She asked for a goat two years ago and now she has Johnson and is wanting to take him to Mwanza!