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HEAL Africa provides holistic care for the people of Democratic Republic of Congo
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Letter From Program Manager, Lyn Lusi 2009

Three of our staff members just returned from a trip to South Kivu, in the remote, inaccessible areas in the northern part of the province. It is a place that is forgotten by South Kivu, and not the responsibility of North Kivu. People are living there like their ancestors did. Most of the area is only accessible on foot.

Bolingo, Eric and Emmanuel took the car as far as they could before they got stuck in mud for hours. The church leaders, the nurses and women leaders were amazed and delighted to see them. The little bit of medicine that was sent by the Tearfund emergency program gave them real joy and inordinate gratitude. We pray that we will be able to continue to go back there and work to establish Nehemiah Committees, which are made up of community and religious leaders who mobilize the village to rebuild and care for its vulnerable populations.

Three other staff members, Bolingo, Ndungo and Neema, are planning a two-week trip starting on Monday in the northeastern health zone of Lubero. The situation there is much the same. It is right on the edge of the escarpment, bordering Lake Edward. It is too far to go from Goma and too far from Butembo, the two largest cities. There is only one bad road through the area; otherwise there are only footpaths. It has been the stronghold of Mai Mai bandits and the FDLR militia for years, and they have only recently been dislodged from this area. Please pray for their safety.

The trip has been organized by the Neema for the safe motherhood program. We hope that we will be able to reach the women who need fistula repair surgery. The women who need this care are in the very isolated areas and we have to get the message to them and organize their transfer to the hospital.

Bolingo and Ndungo have volunteered to go with Neema, and give the church leaders three days of training in four different places. Some of these leaders will be walking over 30 km to get to the meetings.  No one is forcing our staff to go to these remote areas and I'm constantly surprised and delighted to see their total commitment to the vision of reaching remote areas through the churches.
Thanks again for your support.

Best wishes.
Lyn Lusi