We had such a successful day!
Greg headed to Nabumali school for weather station work while the rest of the travel team and John went into Shilongo. We began bright and early, heading into the community around 8:30am. The community members came prepared to work. We had a crew of about 5 or 6 of them helping to dig. It took us awhile to square off the exact dimensions of the tank, and the men helped us by providing string and a carpenter square, and as soon as the measurements were complete, we began digging. Cliff saved the day by bringing a laser level (and snacks!). John says he has earned his supper tonight! The footprint for the tank ended up being larger than we originally planned. While the digging weas happening, Erin C and Erin F helped the women and children gather bricks. It is amazing how much weight the women can carry. Many of the women had 4 bricks on top of their heads, often carrying a child on their backs as well. Even the smallest of the children helped out, with children as small as 2 years being expected to carry a heavy brick.
In addition to gathering bricks, the community showed us where to buy small stones. We ended up purchasing 6 wheelbarrows full of stones for the foundation. It was quite a workout to go up and over the hill plus push a full wheelbarrow full of rocks – thank goodness Rogers took over when our strength (or lack of..) failed.
After breaking for a very late lunch, the sand finally got delivered and we began mixing concrete. The community managed to use just one 50kg bag of concrete for the entire foundation of our tank. We managed to get the concrete layer poured before sunset and before the storm hit. Overall a great day!
Tomorrow we hope to travel into Mbale early in the morning and buy all of the remaining parts, more cement, and groceries (coffee!!!!).
our wonderful day yesterday was slightly downgraded when a sudden downpour rained on our freshly poured concrete. It continued to rain all through the night, with the power going out as well. Today we went straight into Mbale to buy parts and more food. Hopefully we will buy all of the parts we need today, possibly pour another foundation layer of cement, and begin to lay the bricks tomorrow. We are still very busy!!!