Thursday, May 31, 2012

Team Mutomo Heading to Zambia (instead of Kenya)

Team Mutomo Heading to Zambia Several weeks ago, the U.S. Embassy issued a travel warning for Kenya based on information that an attack on hotels and government buildings might be planned for Nairobi, Kenya. Team Mutomo’s work is based in eastern Kenya, and only one night was planned for a layover in Nairobi. Still, while the risk was minimal, it was determined by both the chaperones and the school that students’ safety is paramount and that the trip should be relocated. Through the connections of Vis parent and board member Philip Goldman, who also serves as the lead chaperone for Team Mutomo, Visitation School has secured an opportunity to work with the Dominican Sisters in Ndola, Zambia. In Ndola and surrounding areas, the Sisters support three orphanages, a secondary school, and a health/dental clinic. The ten students and seven chaperones who are going to Zambia will be housed at the convent and the pastoral center. In her introductory email to Team Mutomo, Sr. Margaret, the Regional Superior of the Dominican Sisters in Zambia, said “We believe that the Lord plans what comes our way and there is always a purpose for it. One of our schools, Fatima Girls, is celebrating 60 years of its inception and the jubilee theme is ‘Count your blessings, look back with gratitude, and embrace the future with confidence.’ For us we see your visit as part of our Jubilee blessings!” Team Mutomo counts among its many blessings the generous donors who contributed to the group’s fundraising efforts, which were originally intended solely for the Sisters of Mercy’s work in Mutomo. Through the generosity of several donors, a significant shipment of medical equipment was collected and shipped to Kenya. At this writing, Team Mutomo has determined that it would like to donate half of the fundraising proceeds (net of the costs of the above shipment) to the Sisters of Mercy in Kenya and half to the Dominican Sisters in Zambia. There is a great deal of excitement about the new trip, and the Dominican Sisters have been hard at work preparing for the group’s arrival. As in Mutomo, the group will be addressing the needs of children at very high risk, and the Sisters have a wide range of pressing needs for the group to support. Team Mutomo welcomes your prayers as we embark on this endeavor! Please continue to follow our activities on this blog.