Sierra Leone, Day 7.
We drove through the jungle/rural land in a 4x4 today to a place that was nowhere (Locomasama) and there we found a St Thomas Academy of Hope school. We were met by a huge community dance/choir/band with drums and singing and much celebration. After checking our temperatures (standard for the Ebola risk) we were introduced to the class. Our temperatures seem to have varied wildly at the check points this week. Tim's has ranged between about 31 and 37.9 degrees this week which I am pretty sure means he should have either died or been in quarantine. The thermometers are a little dodgy. None of us have felt ill. Tim and Neil observed a class because they knew what they were doing (as teachers). Tim and Neil really rated the teaching. The man was being observed by about 30 locals (who were just curious), 2 of us, a band of drummers outside and half way through the lesson a chicken came in but still he managed to continue his lesson on the alphabet. Beej and I sang head shoulders knees and toes to another class and we all introduced ourselves. We considered teaching them "shine" but it's early days I think. We needed Joy.
We played a game of football for about 15 minutes with the kindly donated ball from Pilch. This is when the sweat really broke out and not only did I (and all of us) play extremely badly in the heat but I was sweating uncontrollably and soon began to look like I had a major personal hygiene problem (especially as Tim and Neil and Beej seemed fine). It was at this point that we presented the head teacher with the highly acclaimed St Thomas thermos mug (see awkward photo). In all seriousness we had an incredible day and were blessed by seeing two St Thomas schools in full swing and one Peter Lloyd academy soon to launch. The classes are already full and they need to expand and build toilets and a well. Let's hope this is a gift we can give them in the new year. What a privilege to see the difference your giving has made. These children would not have had the opportunity to go to school if it wasn't for your help. Thank you.