Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tears of hope

This past week I had the most amazing opportunity to go to Kissidougou with the director of USAID, Nancy Estes; Luciana, communications assistant (there isn't a title that would be descriptive enough of all that she does!); Dr. Balde, and Dr. Balde, two of my favorite Guineans; and Diawara and Alpha...the amazing drivers that got us safely through the many potholes, and craters in the Guinean roads!

The trip started off visiting various sites that USAID supports, and culminated with the most joyous celebration for the opening of the Fistula Wing of the Regional Kissidougou hospital. I can't even begin to describe all the emotions that flooded me as I stepped out of the car to see nurses, doctors, and local Guineans lined up to greet and welcome us. The sound of African tamborines, and women serenading us in their beautiful local tongue, so loud it was reverberating my heart.  The sight of men, women, and children present to support the women, and chanting "√©liminer les fistules" over and over.  Not a dry eye in the house as a woman suffering from Obstetric Fistula recounted her story, with the hope of being treated in the new Fistula Wing.  As I walked into the ward after the ceremonial ribbon cutting, I suddenly felt hands on my back, pushing me aside. As I turned around, the sight of hordes of fistula patients pushing through the crowds to get to the beds filled the room.  Tears of hope in their eyes. It was a beautiful thing.

Along the way I took some snaps of cute kids, beautiful scenery, interesting transportation and the beautiful fistula ladies...enjoy!

the sweetest kids ever!

Celebrations galore for the opening of the Fistula Wing at Kissidougou Hospital

The interesting transportation of people and animals...

 the beautiful scenery!


The team...

Dr. Balde #2 (the medical doctor one)

Dr. Balde, Mr. Jean Keita (Mayor of Kissidougou), Nancy Estes (Director of USAID), and me!
the lovely Luciana