Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The vision to built a hospital in Esu

PolycarpNji has a vision -  to build a hospital in his home village of Esu. He is one of my closest collaborators in Cameroon. A nurse by education, he runs a small hospital in Limbe. However, his heart is in his home village of Esu. Last year he took me there to see for myself. A village of 30,000 to 40,000 souls, but no water, no electricity and worst, no bathroom facilities whatsoever. I can put up with lots of inconvenience, but this was too much - we left the next morning.

From left: Ruler Fon Albert, Rolande Hodel, Polycarp Nji, Madam Sholar
 Polycarp was not about to give up. He begged me to come back. He had a powerful alley in his Fon who had impressed me very much in the short time I had spent in his village.
Fon Albert is not like other Fon's I have met in Cameroon. He does not drink, has only one wife and only three children. He is educated and loves to works his farm with his own hands.
Most importantly he has good intentions for his people who revier him and whom he loves tenderly.

AIDSfreeAFRICA receives title of one hectare (3.3 acres) of land
 I asked him to host me and to take care of me - he agreed. I asked him to back up any possible projects with his people and AIDSAFRICA as a guaranty in form of land, he presented me the title - I asked him to set up meetings with his subjects - he did.

Armed with my "private bathroom" in form of a plastic bucket we went back to Esu and the rest is history.

I think I met most everyone in these five days. We hooked up young mothers with the Women Empowerment Center so they could get mosquito nets that are free and that they are entitled to but could not get because they had no ID card. We helped form the Esu Family Health Association and an association of the Youth. We hooked up the government health center chief of post with these groups, we AIDS tested, distributed condoms, taught how to use condoms and answered hours of questions concerning AIDS, drugs and life.... At night I would just fall into bed to wake up the next morning and share some of my breakfast with a small boy who visited me every morning to catch a few spoons of my spaghetti and eggs.
Members of the Esu parliament
The Fon kept his promise to take care of me. He hired the juju dancers to amuse us, he took time to sow me the entire village and surroundings, he had me tilt his farm, and most amusing to me, gave me his four wheel truck to dive to town - you have to imagine that in such a village there are no cars to speak off and no roads either.... However, the highest honor was bestowed on Polycap and myself when we were invited to step into the parliament of the Esu village and participate in an ritual of drinking shared palm vine. I was told no White had entered parliament in Esu, and I venture to guess, no woman either.

Now the work begins starting by installing a revolving drug fund until Esu has the Hospital it needs and deserves. I guess AIDSfreeAFRICA  has adopted Esu - or is it the other way around?  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hello Polycarp and Co,
Good to read the report of the second visit. I am so impressed with the writer's views about Esu and look forward to God Blessing Esu through AIDSFREEAFRCA. Esu badly needs quality health and a good hospital. Wishing you all a Happy and Blessed 2011.
Rev Abraham K Akih
Faculty of Theology
Pretoria University-South Africa.