At our scheduled Children’s Clinic yesterday, I ended up working with Christine, the pastor’s wife of the local PEFA church, to administer the de-worming medicine.
Our kids were all there: pouring water, handing out tablets, and (the favored task) distributing sweets when the medicine had been taken. Of course, after a while they all wanted to play and were disappointed that I wouldn’t let them. Around lunch time, they went across the street home, got themselves lunch, and made sure the littles took their naps. That coincided with a lull in the traffic of the clinic, so Christine and I spent a pleasant quarter-hour chatting and enjoying the peace and quiet.
The morning was full of little ones, then the school age children started coming in just after lunch time. I had the great honor of being the one to make the littles take their liquid medicine. Let me just say, many of these children don’t like taking medicine and most of these Mamas just make it go down. No amount of screaming or writhing will convince them otherwise (and there were plenty of both of those). Next time I’ll volunteer myself to hand out the tablets!
I suppose I should have expected a few “hiccups” in our first big effort in community outreach. And there were some. But in the end, about 180 children received de-worming medicine yesterday. I’ve met several people in the local Public Health Department who offered positive feedback and also asked us to continue this work. They felt that this particular clinic was small compared to the need in our area, and expressed interest in holding another at a school not too far away, where more children can be served. I am sure we will be in communication, and we’re looking forward to interacting more with our community and meeting some of the needs that are here.