Wednesday, September 11, 2013

We are, definitely, "not in Kansas anymore"!

Hello from the DRC!

As we landed in Kinshasa it was late and very dark.  After a long flight we were very glad to get off the plane! Just so you will know, the airport in Kinsasha is a small airport with only one runway, which is, thankfully, long enough to accomodate a big jet.  The customs area is very old, but we found the officials to be very friendly. 

We made our way through customs and proceeded to collect our luggage, where we waited another two hours for our luggage.  Apparently luggage is still unloaded by hand, one bag at a time.  We finally collected all of our bags and were off to another "bucket list" adventure! (that's what we jokingly say, quite frequently, during our foreign travels)!

Waiting for us was our Congo in country coordinator who directed us to our transportation.  Off to the hotel we went.  The road into the city is very dark, except for a few passing headlights and some small roadside fires.......another advenure!
We checked in at our hotel, the Sunny Day guest house.  The guest houses are small flatlets that have a kitchen and one big room.  The accommodations are very comfortable.  Most importantly, the air conditioner and wifi work great.
Now for the reason we are here:
We have been to 2 orphanages the past few days.  At the first orphanage we were blessed to be able to improve the living conditions for the children.  Through generous donations we were able purchase beds, generators, food bins full of food, and towels along with other baby needs.

At the second orphanage we saw our children and obtained new referrals.  To our delight, we were able to take part in transporting 2 children, who recently passed court, to Sunshine House.  As many of you know, Sunshine House is the foster care facility where our children will be cared for until their parents come to bring them home.  This experience was definitely the highlight of this trip for us and we feel so blessed to have been a part of it!  When we arrived at Sunshine House, Claire, Violet, Clarisse, Liam, Hank and Matrice were waiting for us with HUGE smiles.  Ellie and Nifaute are adjusting quite well!

The next day we visited the US Embassy - getting into a bank vault may have been easier, but once we eventually got to where we needed to be.  We were able to meet with officials, who were very helpful and informative.  They informed us our program is very compliant, although we were not surprised it was wonderful to here!

We still have another week of work to do here, but we are so excited to report that EAC's Congo program is very strong!  We feel so blessed to be able to see this wonderful process firsthand!

Thank you for your prayers and continued support!
Debra and Robin

Here are some pictures from our trip so far:

Debra and her new friends!
Robin has also made a few friends!

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