Heavy rains pelted us just minutes after my arrival in Balama on Saturday (13th) at 1pm. A small cyclone (hurricane) is off our coast, and the rains are expected to continue for the next 72 hours. No joy as our solar power will suffer greatly.
These Non-stop “Cyclone Rains” will halt all repairs on Pastor Joaquim’s home/kitchen and the Rovuma church that were badly damaged on January 9th.
A heavy storm with high winds completely ripped off the roof on the Pastor’s house, and collapsed part of the walls of both these buildings.
Pastor’s house after roof blew off. Today rains took the walls too!
I just got word by phone (Sunday) that the Pastor’s house walls are now crumbling due to the heavy rains! BARRELS of water were dumped last night onto the mud bricks walls, causing them to melt and fall.
With little hope of repairing this home in the next 3 days, it will mean a completely REBUILDING of the house with a method called “PAO-PEEKY”.
Pao-Peeky uses 16 foot long (4 meter) spliced tree trunks to form the vertical walls. The men dig down about 3 feet (1 meter), packing the posts into the ground to stabilize them. They then tie the posts together on both sides with split bamboo 16 feet (4 meters) long. This very strong structure now looks like an animal barn until the mud is plastered on both sides, making it a solid mud wall that can be painted for additional rain protection.
This method is more expensive than mud brick, but it is much stronger. Rains can pummel the walls, but they will not fall down due to the wood frame. I know this may be hard to “visualize” so I will take photos as they build it once the cyclone has passed.
The cost of rebuilding Pastor Joaquim’s home/kitchen is estimated at about $800.
Replacing the roof with tin sheets will cost an additional $425.
The wall damage to the church will also have to be replaced using the Pao-Peeky method. Estimated cost is about $500.
TODAY it is impossible to even travel by bicycle to this area due to the deep mud. Further update on this next week.
A MARVELOUS CHRISTMAS WEEKEND THANKS TO THE EMPLOYEES OF THE AUSTRAILIAN BASED SYRAH/TWIGG GRAPHITE MINE!
Twigg’s truck load of food and frozen chicken and fish was delivered 2 days prior to the party. Our mothers have to start cooking at 5 a.m. on Christmas Day in order to feed our 150+ guests.
Elves deliver party time food before Christmas
Over 400 lbs (180+kg) of frozen chicken and fish were included in this most generous food offering. Because we have no freezers, this part of the offering was distributed immediately, giving the children a super delicious Christmas Eve feast! The children had never seen so much meet at one time. This was a first for all of us!
Twigg’s “Elves”, with our staff and 2 orphans pose with gifts for our 99 children
Jumping with JOY on Christmas Day our children watched truckloads of toys, candy, and school materials roll into our party area. (We had kept this a surprise.) The foster mothers were ecstatic when presented with bags of SEEDS to plant.
Note: This year’s 2 Christmas goats (no such thing as Turkey around here), were donated by the Jessica Davis family of Tulsa, OK.
Santa handing candy to our children.
THANK YOU SO MUCH TO ALL OF YOU FOR “MAKING THIS DAY” SUCH A SPECIAL ONE FOR OUR CHILDREN, FOSTER MOTHERS, AND STAFF.
BUSH BUNNY BRENDA LANGE
AND THE BALAMA STAFF