I am at Bethsaida and settled into the volunteer house. There are four other volunteers here now, but all are leaving within the next two weeks. There are two from Germany who have been here a year, as part of an ongoing project. They will be replaced with two more German volunteers in August sometime. They teach, work in the office, work on the grounds, and basically help anywhere they can.

There are also two women from Finland, who are studying art therapy in the UK and have been here for five weeks doing art workshops with the girls. It sounds like they leave early next week.

I have met some of the girls and a few teachers. I helped the Marie (German volunteer) with her computer class this afternoon. I will possibly continue it for her when she leaves (approx 10 days).

They are in need of science tutors so I will probably do a lot of that. I meet the Biology teacher tomorrow, he was not in today.  I also spoke with one of the staff about helping to write a new brochure and update their website.

My room is basic, but more than adequate. A twin bed with mosquito net. My own bathroom. The toilet does not flush, but there is a tap and a bucket strategically placed so I fill the bucket and use it to flush. I have a shower and sink. I am not hopeful about hot water. There appears to be one temperature – lukewarm. I can deal with lukewarm.

I have a side table with two shelves, and a closet area with a rail but no hangers. I hung my dress and some blouses over it, but will live out of my pack otherwise.

We have a full kitchen, and staff cook for us most days. The food (according to the others, and my two meals so far) is simple, but good. Lunch yesterday was boiled potatoes carrots and beans, in a chicken like broth – but no meat. Still, I was surprised how good it was. Supper was rice with a vegetable stew. They provide all the basics, and volunteers tend to supplement with other foods – buying milk, fruit, etc.

So far, all is well. I look forward to being put to work, but having a day to settle in has been quite helpful.


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