Day 4 of Teams Experiences

Thanks to all the donors who so graciously donated to Hope Ministries because your donations helped buy all the food that we made into food packets and were brought to each of the families that they visited.  




Jambo (hello)!

Jina langu ni Jasmine (my name is Jasmine).  I am a senior nursing major. I am going to share about some of our experiences today.Today our team divided into two different groups: one group went on hospice homecare visits and the other group a few things in town. Hospice crew: Diane, Sarah, Grace, Hannah and I. Around town crew: Gayle, Carly, Rachel, Katie, Ally, and Melinda.

 Today we got a feel of what it's like to be on what we call "Tanzanian time." In Tanzania people are not at all punctual and time does not matter. We practiced our patience this morning as we planned to leave with the hospice homecare team at 9:30 and had to wait at least 30 minutes for them to arrive. When the hospice team came we did introductions and presented them with the food bags we were bringing to the families. On the hospice team there was a doctor, a nurse, and a pastor. The food packages consisted of rice, beans, avocados, bananas, oranges, cucumbers, and cooking oil. After piling into the van we were off! On our way to the patients' homes we stopped to pick up a volunteer, who joined our team. The volunteer visits a total of about 30 patients. Just under half of her patients are suffering from HIV and the rest are battling other diseases. The volunteer goes out of her way to visit her patients, she walks long distances, rides bike or pays to ride a bus. She was very sweet and was excited to have us as a part of the team for the day. We visited four patients today.

 The patients lived in a small village on the outskirts of Arusha.  The first patient we visited was a 34 year old female. She has HIV and the doctor suspected that she also has some sort of cancer. Today she had complaints of numbness in her hands and feet and oral thrush. I had the chance to take her blood pressure. She does not have any family nearby, besides her four children. Two of her children go to school and the other two are too young so they stay with her. Her boyfriend works in a far away place and only comes to visit the family once a month.

The second patient is suffering from HIV as well. She is 39 years old. This patient was not doing well, she is very ill. She is having respiratory problems and she has a productive cough. Grace and Sarah had the opportunity to take her blood pressure. She and her two children live together. She has been married two times, but her both of her husbands have left her because they were HIV negative.

The third patient was a 49 year old man. He also has HIV. He did not have any complaints or symptoms. The doctor explained to us that they have to counsel him often and encourage him to take his HIV drugs. He has a history of alcohol and drug abuse, which is often, is the reason for his cessation of taking his HIV medications. He has lost his wife from HIV. He has had two children; sadly one of his children has passed.

The last patient was a 34 year old woman who also has HIV. She was doing well. She did not have complaints of any symptoms. She was once married and they had two children; however she and her husband separated and now she and her children are now living with her parents.

We presented each of the patients with the packages of food and cooking oil; they were all very grateful. The hospice homecare team graciously welcomed us and were thankful we could join them.

The other group went along with Gayle to run an errand. They stayed in the van and waited for her and in the meantime the van was swarmed with some people trying to sell items to the girls. They also visited a Tanzanite jewelry shop. Following that they went to embrace the culture. At this point the hospice homecare team was finished and we joined the rest of the team. We went through a snake exhibit, with some other animals (owls, alligators, baboon, lizards, etc.). Then we walked through a Massai Culture Museum, which exhibited the Massai tribe traditions. After that we went on camel rides. And then we enjoyed Pineapple and Passion fruit Fanta drinks, yum! Finally, we went to a market and bargained for some goods.

At the moment I am typing this in the dark. The power has gone on and off four or five times as I have been writing this. I hope you all are able to receive this message! J Thank you for reading the update. Also, thank you for all of your thoughts and prayers. We appreciate your support!

Asante Sana (thank you very much)!

Mungu Akubariki (God bless you)!

Jasmine Frye












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