16 May 2008

Sister Tracy

Sister Tracy is a registered mid-wife who has been volunteering at Emthonjeni for many years now. Twice a week, she puts her own kids into childcare and comes to the clinic to see pregnant moms from Zandspruit. About 300 moms-to-be come in every month to get vitamins, education on childcare, HIV/AIDS, healthy living, even domestic abuse.... and of course, to make certain their babies are growing well. Having a clinic right in Zandspruit makes it viable for these moms to actually get to an appointment since catching a taxi to sit in a free clinic downtown will take them a full day. And they aren't always treated nicely in other places. Sister Tracy and Bongi and their staff give everyone the love that every pregnant mom needs. Once they get to be close to full term, Sister Tracy sets an appointment with a clinic in the next town for the moms to be able to deliver at the hospital. One of our biggest needs is for another midwife willing to come in and share the clinic responsibilities with Sister Tracy long term. You can join us in praying for this person to open their hearts to these beautiful women.

Last week, Sister Tracy brought in 300 flu immunizations for the kids in the GoLang after care program. Around 250 children lined up and took their turns stepping up to Sister Tracy's gentle touch. The impact that this will make on these kids is amazing. Living in shacks, often with no electricity, which means no heaters or even warm water all winter long - mixed with the ever-present reality of inadequate sanitation in the settlement leads to weakened immune systems and many viruses that can prey on these kids. Many of the volunteers also opted for protection against this winter's viruses as well. And since I had just recovered from a week long intestinal flu with high fevers, it didn't take much to talk me in to getting immunized too. I only cried a little bit.

(this is Irene, she works with the kids in the after care program.... and she is a sweetie)

(and this is Bongi - she runs the ante-natal clinic with Sister Tracy)

(waiting their turn..... )

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