February 7, 2014

Something better was achieved

Friday 9th January

I begin the morning by bringing up the much needed shells from the jetty to the site, the rest of the sand from the store, and some remaining stone.

The next section of the tank base is completed after lunch, which leaves a small section of the first half of the large tank base to complete.

I know I will not be able to complete the whole of the base now and am a little disappointed.

I take a look at the materials and notice that we are now also going to need more sand. Due to us having to alter the mix, another 18 bags of cement were required.

What to do? I quietly pray about this and ask the Lord for help.

That evening I was talking about the situation with Ruth (the Lady who oversees the project in Rama Cay).

She advised me that they could employ a man from Bluefields to come and oversee the concrete work.I was very reluctant to do this, as I had never seen him make a concrete base using a cement mixer and a tamper, which these people had never used before.

I know that the bags of cement we have remaining will not keep until I return due to the humidity, they would go off very quickly.

It’s then that one of the community leaders overhearing me talking, speaks up and says, “John, we would be happy to complete the other half of the tank base next week ourselves, you have taught us the mix required, and shown us how to use the tamper, we would like to complete the base for you”.

WOOOOOW this thrilled me, these people are hard to motivate to work alone, now they want to do it, I was so thankful.

I told them that this was my vision for them – that they would learn these skills, and also learn to work together. I was thrilled! Deciding not to bring the man from Bluefields to oversee the job, I put them to the test on the Saturday morning. 1 team whom I choose to work the concrete, each having their own job, and another team came with me to install a hand pump to another water well.

Saturday after lunch I went to see the concrete and was very pleased with how they had done the job. Funds were left with Ruth to purchase the remaining material.

I am confident that by now the tank base is complete and to my satisfaction.

I left Bluefields on the morning of Sunday 11th feeling blessed. The tank base was not finished, nor have we received the tanks we purchased to put in place, but something better was achieved – the people watched, learned and are willing to work alone, which was my vision.

I now look forward to returning to install the tanks and water line, and teach some vital plumbing skills.

See a full collection of images from the Rama Cay project here