Photos of Mulamba
Freshly arrived – Some photos from Chris McClare in Mulamba – enjoy
The Leader Team
|Jim McPherson||Chief Leader|
|Chris Clifford||Deputy leader, Treasurer, Environment|
|Lynsey Anderson||Publicity, Fund raising, Asst Equipment, Asst Catering|
|Jeni Christison||Cultural, Liaison|
|Laura Howie||Safety, Travel|
|Nan Lyle||Equipment, Catering|
|Scott Smellie||to be arranged|
|Clare Smillie||Fund raising, Adventure|
After selection, the long process of Fund Raising, Training and preperation for
this adventure begins.
A Calendar of the main events so far and some future dates are:
|Training Day||Saturday 18th June||Selkirk|
|Training Weekend 1||Friday 8th – Sunday 10th September||Yarrow Valley|
|Training Weekend 2||Friday 20th – Sunday 22nd September||nr Earlston|
|Information Evening||Thursday 26th October||Lindean|
|Fund Raising Quiz Night||Thursday 23rd November||Earlston|
|Scott of Selkirk : Fund Raising||Sat 2nd / Sunday 3rd December||Selkirk|
|Training Weekend 3||Friday 8th – Sunday 10th December||Broadmeadows|
|Training Weekend 4||Friday 26th – Sunday 28th January||Newmill|
|Training Weekend 5||Friday 16th – Sunday 18th March||Lilliesleaf / Riddell|
|Training Weekend 6||Friday 1st – Sunday 3rd June||West Morrison (tbc)|
|Hawick Moor Clean up||Sunday 10th June||Hawick (tbc)|
|Selkirk Rugby Club Clear Up||Sunday 17th June||Selkirk (tbc)|
|Scotland Zambia Barbecue||Sunday 24th June||Hawick|
|Packing Evening||Tue 26th June||Selkirk|
|Advance Party Depart||29th June||via Newcastle|
|Departure||4th July||via Heathrow|
|Return||9th – 10th August|
Training Weekend 1
We arrived in anticipation to what we would experience over the weekend, at Cappercauleigh Hall next to St. Mary’s Loch, and we began with some icebreakers. We were then separated into groups, where we planned what we thought would be our routes for our walk on Sunday, however we later found out that this wasn’t the case! After all the ice breakers and activities were finished, we got ready for bed, where we slept inside the hall- a bit crammed!
Once we were woken up bright and early, we did some “light exercise” before having our breakfast, however the breakfast group had a few problems with the porridge, resulting in none being served, so we just had to settle for some bacon and sausages.
By late morning we began the workshops, where we were taught how to use trangia stoves (which would come in handy for later…), given advice on hygiene, given a medical check, and how could we forget… the training circuit, where some of us realised we needed to do a lot more exercise!
After we had eaten our lunches we got ready to set off to our campsite. After an hour or so long walk we eventually made it to our home for the night-a flat bit on a hill with some dry stoned dykes… what luxury. Once all our shelters were looking in perfect condition (except one which was looking a bit dodgy…) we began making our tea, hoping that at least someone in our groups had listened during the lesson earlier on!
Well the night was drawing in by now, and the conspiracies of what the training team might have planned were at their peaks, what with the safety guys arriving we were getting a little worried. Finally we got to find out what they had in store for us… a gorge walk at 10 o’clock at night, just before we would go to bed in our drafty shelters…great. However we were all rather excited at the prospect, all be it a little nervous of falling in the water, and unfortunately we did have some falls, mainly from Hayleigh though who got a little bit wet. And just as we thought we were nearing the end of the activity we were faced with “ladders” to climb up the side of the gorge with. However despite the falls and heights, the evening proved to be a highlight of the weekend, all that was left now to do was to try and get to sleep…
We woke in the morning with the prospect of going on a hike, however we were cheered up by the sight of porridge, which managed to survive this time. The next thing on the list of things to do was go for a walk, however there was a slight twist… the route planners we had made for our groups all got swapped around so each group did a different group’s route, where we got to check out each other route planning skills. Nevertheless we managed to get back to the hall, where we got an update on the phases. Then the weekend had come to an end and we all headed off for long hot showers…
By Jamie and Fiona
Training Weekend 5
The Zambia 2007 team have just had their penultimate training weekend. It was based at Lilliesleaf Hall with work being done by the group at the Riddell Estate.
When the leaders and venturers arrived on Friday night everyone was really excited at the idea that this was the second last training weekend and there were only 102 days left till Zambia! We found out that we were getting a new leader for Zambia 2007 – Scott Smillie – so we were all really pleased to meet him and hope that he felt welcome within the group.
The night kicked off with Vicki Moyes demonstrating the sort of kit that we should be taking to Zambia. It began to sink in how close the expedition was and everybody was in high spirits! We then had various talks about the ‘Golden Rules’ and the social phase, which we started to plan. Then everyone went to bed and snoring was at a minimum for once!
The majority of the following day was spent at the Riddle Estate working in four small groups around the farm. The first group had the lovely job of clearing out cattle grids and then moved on to clearing branches off a fence. Unfortunately this resulted in an injury – Caitlin Fraser hit herself in the face with a branch! The second group rebuilt an old wall and we’re happy to report that there were no injuries in that group! Maybe some sore legs from mixing the mortar though! The third group rebuilt a wall and made a concrete floor. None of that group was talking to Chris Clifford once they found out that they could have had a cement mixer instead of spending six hours mixing concrete by hand! The fourth group were the ‘A-team’ and they were lucky enough to get to rescue a bridge. Once moving the bridge from one end of a field to the other they had a grand opening ceremony! None of this would have been possible without the guidance and help of Keith Riddle, Jamie Gray and Ron Sutherland, so we’d like to say a big thank you to them!
At the end of the day Andrew Grant was kind enough to donate a large sum of money to the group as a thank you for all of our hard work. But the hard work wasn’t over, as Christine kindly informed us – we had a huge challenge for that evening!
The leaders left to go to Jim’s house where they all fell asleep! Meanwhile the venturers were given £160, 4 hours and a bag of tartan and told to transform the Lilliesleaf Hall and prepare a four course meal for thirty two people! From scratch! We all pulled together and organised into small groups to arrange the evening. We worked together to decorate the hall and cook all the food and to sort out some fab entertainment.
We had two amazing guests at the meal – Dr Dorothy Logie and Mr Tom Healey – who shared their experiences of Zambia with us and gave us some invaluable advice to help us on our expedition. Dr Logey is part of the Scottish Borders Aids Awareness Group and works in a hospital in Zambia. She was full of interesting information! Mr Headly told us about the history of Zambia and of his experiences of the country. His description of the night sky sparked everyone’s imagination. After tidying up the meal we were all exhausted and fell into bed – nobody even cared about Chris Clifford’s excessive snoring!
In the morning everyone woke up to the surprise of snow! Unfortunately this meant that we couldn’t go back to the Riddle Estate to finish what we’d started the day before so we had to change our plans. We got spoken to about our kits again and then tried to write down what we thought were the most important ‘Golden Rules’. We ventured into the snow for a surprisingly short walk considering we were with BEG! Fortunately the weather cleared up during mid-morning so we could go back to the Riddle Estate again. We did various jobs to finish off what we had started on Saturday, including levelling an area of courtyard, mucking out a stable and finishing building the bridge.
We returned to the Hall at Lilliesleaf for lunch and then we were updated on the various phases of the expedition. In the community phase we found out that the previous plan had fallen through because of the unsafe nature of the area but a new project is being pursued which sounds amazing! The environmental phase also seems to be progressing with the group hopefully going to work in the Munga Wanga Nature park. We then talked about the adventure phase and Clare took our ideas about what we would like to do for that phase. We each also volunteered to help with the phase or other area of the expedition that we found the most interesting. To round off the weekend we finished in the tradition way – with our high and low points from the weekend.
Everyone seems to have had a great time at the penultimate training weekend and we all left the weekend feeling really excited about how close the expedition is!
By Aimee and Jane
Hello from Zambia!
After a long hard year of fundraising and training the Zambia expedition 2007 finally kicked off with the departure of the Advance Party on Friday 29th June. They reached Lusaka without a hitch on 30th June and spend the next three days shopping for all of the supplies that the main party would need when they arrived in Zambia. This consisted of tables, chairs, desks and two lorry loads of food!
The main party was soon with the in Mulamba (100 miles east of Lusaka), having safely arrived after a long, but successful flight. On arrival they were met by a truly unforgettable welcome from the children of the Mulamba community. Almost everyone had a tear in their eye as the children sang and danced for us, the excitement plain on their faces.
A camp was quickly established behind the school with no end of help from the local children. Everyone was more than happy when we could fall into our sleeping bags after almost two full days of travel! The next two days were spent fine tuning the base camp – sorting out the washing areas, toilets and the kitchen, as well as interacting with the school pupils and recieving our first few lessons in nyanja (one of the local languages).
Saturday saw the first day of work on the football pitch. This involves levelling a very large termite mound, where the ground feels more like cement than soil! The only tool that can make an impression on it is the pick axe, and even one of them managed to snap in half! Progress has been good and we have achieved more than we could ever have hoped to.
The group had a rest day on Sunday where we all went on a guided trek up a nearby hill. It was hard in the African heat but thouroughly enjoyed by all. It was really interesting to see Mulamba from a distance.
A new daily routine was introduced on Monday (9th July). This involves a 6am start with first breakfast, two thirds of the group working at 7am and the other third of the group catering for the full day. Then work between second breakfast, lunch and dinner (7am – 9am, 10.15am – 12.15, 3pm – 5pm), with a two hour siesta in the afternoon to avoid working in the midday sun.
Monday also saw the start of the constuction of the health centre accommodation. This involves digging the foundations to a depth of one metre (the outer walls foundations were achieved on Wednesday 11th July), filling them with concrete and then building the walls and the roof. The digging of the foundations has been really difficult, we could not have done it so quickly without the help of the locals, but it is really rewarding to see the end result. At the same time the football pitch has continued to be flattened, a job which has broken many of our tools!
One of the most important parts of everones day has been the food which has been fantastic! We’ve been eating a lot of western food like mince and potatoes, stovies and pasta but we’ve also tried some of the traditional Zambian food: mshima (a dish made with maize and water eaten with different relishes). A local woman cooked the mshima for us and this is one of the many ways that the local community has been helping us.
We have been lucky enough to be able to visit sites such as a measles clinic and St Lukes hospital in small groups. The hospital was very clean and well equiped, and those who went to the measles clinic were able to get involved in the assembly line – mostly giving out worming tablets, vitamin A tablets and hep (nutritious grain for biscuits or porridge). There have also been regular trips out to Lusaka for supplies.
All in all we are having a fantastic time. It really is an experience of a lifetime and makes the past year of fundraising well worth while! Thank you to all who have helped us get here.
Tizaonana! (see you!)
Zambia 2007 team
Hello from Zambia
We are making excellent progress with building the new health centre for the community. We finished digging the trenches on Friday, managing to shift 60 cubic metres all by hand, which was a great effort by everyone in the group and a few helpful locals. We have now progressed onto the concrete mixing which is very hard work. Its being used to build up the foundations, we have completed more than anticipated.
On Thursday of last week we received a significant visit from the District Commisioner who was delighted by the work we have done after seeing all the progress made on our projects he said ‘its great that you have travelled all the way from Scotland to help the Zambians.’ We feel that after this visit it has enabled us to make connections and put Mulamba on the map. We are hopeful that District Commisioner will now support Mulamba in further development and enhance their quality of life.
Over the course of this weekend the Zambian team split into two groups, one of which went for a well earned rest at the Kiambi Lodge, where they enjoyed luxurious food in a wonderful setting followed by a boat safari down the Zambezi river. Everyone agreed it was a once in a lifetime experience which exceeded our expectations. There was a lot of wildlife to see that we all got very excited about and im sure the majority of us took 100 plus photos in that one day. The other half of the group stayed at base camp where we carried with our building projects for part of the weekend, bu also enjoyed relaxing time to catch up on things like laundry and this group will be going on the safari next weekend.
After making vast progress on the initial projects we are now looking at other options for helping the community such as levelling the area between school buildings or starting foundations for a school extension.
Hi again from Zambia.
Since the last report was sent many things have been happening both inside and outside the camp. Now two thirds of the camp have been away on safari and have throughly enjoyed the experience. The third group will be going in two weeks time during the time that we are in Munda Wanga.
The community phase is now slowly coming to an end and the changes that have occured over the last couple of days have been astonishing. The foundations have been finished and the walls are constructed to ground level. We can now all see the difference that has been made since we have arrived. Since the last report we have taken on a couple of other projects – clearing an area of land for agricultural use by the school and a survey on the use of water from the borehole. We hope that this will be used to help raise funds for repair work if needed for the existing borehole or for another new borehole to be put in.
Other visits that have taken place have been to an A.R.T (antiretro viral treatment) clinic, eye clinic, waterfall and local farms. The group that went to the A.R.T clinic and eye clinic found the experience to be very educational, with a very happy and caring atmosphere, not at all what they had expected. During the last weekend the group that wasn’t on safari went to a local waterfall which was very relaxing for the group and the time out of camp was well appreciated.
On Wednesday 18th the exploration group and the local community came together for an entertainment afternoon. This consisted of poems, songs, music and dance from both cultures. The local group showed us some of their dancing and we followed with a ceilidh. We tried to teach the locals ceilidh dancing which was an experience in itself.
Monday 23rd saw the group hand out the gifts that were brought from Scotland. This consisted of pens, pencils, notepads, toys and t-shirts etc. The gifts were divided between the school classes and every child was given a small token of our time with them. As we are near the end of the community phase we are very grateful to all the companies and organisations that have supplied us with tools to undertake this task. The tools will be of great benefit to the community when we have left. Along with the tools we will be leaving a good number of tables and benches specifically intended for the school.
On Thursday of this week we will be leaving Mulamba and traveling almost 600km to Livingstone with an overnight stay near Lusaka before commencing the next phase of the expedition, the adventure phase.
Since Tues. 24th we have finished the community phase – the nurses’ accommodation building is now at slab level. Everyone is really pleased about this since that was one of our initial aims, now achieved, plus about all the other things we also did for the community.
We left Mulamba as planned on Thursday, sad to leave the people we’ve met there but looking forward to our return visit on the 8th of August.
We had an overnight stop at Eureka campsite near Lusaka and enjoyed the luxury of hot showers, electricity and a meal out.
We’re now in Livingstone, the “tourist capital” of Zambia, on our adventure phase. We’re camping, closely packed but quite happy with the facilities here. So far we’ve done a canoe safari on the Zambezi, well above the Victoria Falls, and saw plenty of hippos – a few rather close for comfort – and crocodiles. During our elephant interaction we had the chance to feed the elephants, touch them and sit on their knees!
We’d a superb day at the Victoria Falls. They really are awesome, far more impressive than anyone could imagine, both the sight and sound of them. One of the highlights was seeing a full circle rainbow and on our return the same evening, because of the full moon, we even saw a lunar rainbow. Two leaders and eight venturers were brave enough to do the Bungi jump off the bridge.
Monday was a leisurely day, the morning spent in Livingstone, individuals shopping, visiting the museum or just wandering and taking in the atmosphere of the town. In the afternoon we had a visit to a crocodile farm, Zambia’s biggest tree, and finished off on a shopping spree at Mukuni, a craft village. Much haggling was done, some with more success than others.
Today, Tuesday, the group is white water rafting all day – you’ll hear all about that in the next email.
Tomorrow, our last full day here, the plans include a walking safari, microlight and helicopter rides.
Time is flying by and we head back to Lusaka on Thursday, to Munda Wanga for our final phase.
From us all here on the Zambia 2007 Expedition.
|Child First. A Charity for Street Children in Zambia||
|Zambia Newspapers and other info|
|An online guide to Zambia|
|Lonely Planet Guide to Zambia|