Organized by: John Dabbs
John Dabbs via Crowdrise
September 01, 2015
Grace is a caregiver. Not just an ordinary caregiver, but an extraordinary one. With no formal training she saw my father through his most difficult days at the end of his life. She did this with uncommon compassion when compassion was called for and just the right amount of sternness when that was justified. She kept her sense of humor and never missed an opportunity to check in on him. I believe she even made a Christian of the man who was so dear to me. For a short period a nurse was engaged, but it soon became apparent that the professional could not hold a candle to Grace herself and was summarily shown the door. In July this year I visited the country to spread my father’s ashes and pay my respects to his memory, my widowed mother and to Grace for her service. As always, I was greeted with an ivory smile, a bear hug and an update on the grandson. We spent hours chatting and her dreams of owning a house of her own became apparent. In Africa, many of us have a rural home and family to return to but in Grace’s case that situation is not an option. I resolved to fulfill her dream and provide her with a modest house of her own on a plot of land she has purchased already.
If I have to I will save the funds and slowly build her home, but if I could achieve it sooner, she will have a place to accommodate her family sooner. We have already made a good start: the plot is mostly paid off; two rooms are built, plastered inside and with floors. I plan on adding a living room, a bathroom and a small porch and believe the budget of $15,000 is realistic. This will include providing electricity, digging and provisioning a well, installing a septic system and a water purification filter. All materials and labor will be sourced from local sources as far as is possible. The funds will be used as per the schedule below. I would point out that some figures are estimates only.
Excavate for well $ 1,200
Provide well pump and security to same† 1,500
Water tank and reticulation 1,000
Electricity connection and wiring 2,500
Tankless water heater 1,000
Septic tank and leach field 2,000
Complete construction of the house 6,000
† Depending on electric service to the area this may have to be a solar unit and prices could change.
What can I offer donors in return? Not a lot, I am afraid, but certainly a line of communication, a series of updates and an introduction to the community. If ever anyone were traveling to that part of the world I would arrange for a visit to the site. The Future Who knows where it leads, but working with this community is most rewarding. The people are of the highest integrity and despite a severe economy and high unemployment, laughter is prevalent.
September 2015 Update
The interior of the existing building is now plastered and has had a floor poured. We are now about to have the well dug; it being the end of the dry season and the optimal time to do so. We hope to have this completed by the end of October.