June 17, 2009

In South Africa (still in transit)

Hi. We've made it this far! Only a short flight remains from Johannesburg to Beira, Mozambique. The best word to describe our flights thus far: sleep!

We're staying at a lovely guest house called Marben Manor (link: http://www.marbenmanor.co.za/ ) which has wireless Internet. It is great to have a short 'home base' while we are here. We stayed here last year, too. : )

Everyone is fine, and I look forward to going to Moz tomorrow. I will be uploading pictures when I have the opportunity as well as video. I'm just as excited now as I was last year on the eve of our venture in Mozambique.

June 16, 2009

Heading Out!

Today is the big day! I will be traveling about 24 hours total to Mozambique. I fly from MSP->Amsterdam (8-8.5 hour flight), 3 hour layover in Amsterdam, then fly from Amsterdam->Johannesburg (10-10.5 hour flight), and then overnight in Johannesburg. On Thursday, June 18, I will fly from Jo-burg to Beira, Mozambique, arriving at 1PM Moz time (6AM Central time). For those who are unaware, I don't like flying very much, but I am looking forward to this trip!

Thanks again for all of your support!

June 13, 2009

HIV/AIDS Rates in South of Mozambique On The Rise

The Mozambican government regards the HIV prevalence in the south of the country as "alarming", since the incidence of the virus is much higher than the national average of 16 per cent among Mozambicans aged between 15 and 49.

The last epidemiological surveillance round, in 2007, showed that Gaza has the highest HIV infection rate in the country, at 27 per cent. Maputo province was not far behind on 26 per cent, and the figure for Maputo city was 23 per cent. The current projections are that in the short term these infection rates will rise to 35 per cent in Gaza, 34 per cent in Maputo province and 29 per cent in Maputo city.

Source: http://allafrica.com/stories/200906120678.html

NOTE: I will be in Central Mozambique where the HIV/AIDS rates vary from village to village.

June 12, 2009

Fast Facts on Mozambique

*Located in southeast Africa on the Indian Ocean

*Larger than California with a population of 20 million people

*Under Portuguese influence for over 400 years achieving independence from Portugal in 1975

*Most adults have elementary-level education

*Many live on $30 a month

*Adult life expectancy: 40 years

*Leading causes of death: malaria, cholera, AIDS, and poor nutrition

June 11, 2009

Five Days Left

We leave in five days and have a lot of suitcases packed already. Thank you so much to those of you who have donated supplies (pencils, paper, pens, erasers, elastic bandages, sphygmometers, various baking pans, and so on) as well as suitcases and money to help us supply the school with the needed items. The outpouring of products has been very encouraging!

I came to work today to find some Portuguese language comic books and a small football waiting for me by my office door. Thanks for your generosity--without your assistance, this trip would not be a reality!

May 2, 2009

A Closer Look at Moz

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I will be working in a community outside of Beira (in central Moz) which is located about 45 minutes from the Beira International Airport. (If you look at the word "Mozambique" on the map, Beira is to the left.

Our trip will include flying from Minneapolis to Amsterdam, then Amsterdam to Johannesburg, overnight at a bed and breakfast, and then a two-hour flight from Johannesburg to Beira.

May 1, 2009

Where is Mozambique?

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Mozambique ("Moz" for short) is located in southeastern Africa on the Indian Ocean. It is bordered by Tanzania, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Zambia, Swaziland, and Malawi.

March 26, 2009

First Day of School

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Students waiting for the first day of school to begin. (Feb. 2, 2009)

Ready, Set, Go!

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In approximately 81 days, I will be returning to central Mozambique to work with the same project. I'm so excited to go! My main responsibilities will be to facilitate the adoption of a new English (ESL) curriculum and teach. Because the needs of the project change from time to time, I won't know what my schedule will be like until I arrive.