Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Simon Leprosy Colony

Simon Leprosy Colony is located in an area that once was considered "way out of town" from Rajahmundry. That was the custom in establishing locations for leprosy colonies.

Today, Rajahmundry has grown to the Colony.

There are 20 families living in the Colony.

Not all have houses. 

Some families live in lean-tos and other make-shift housing. 

People affected by leprosy mostly keep to themselves. They depend on each other. They have to. It's their survival pattern.

Our first visit was 7 Nov 2016. Here, Vincent--a Rising Star Social Worker--and Dr. Hilton--Medical Director and Managing Director-- and Augustus visit with Simon staff.

Rising Star deals solely with those affected by leprosy. This is not just the patient but the family members that have difficulties because of the stigma attached to the disease.

Here, a multi-generation family live in the Colony in a lean-to made from fish food sacks, poles and whatever else is available.

The Colony medical dispensary is located in a dilapidated 
building that has no electricity, a leaky roof and is nearly ready to fall down.

LDSC was not able to help with such large capital expenses, but Rising Star Outreach joined with the Project and is helping with building repairs. They will also be paying the salary of their Medical Practitioner that helps the people with their many needs.

LDSC is providing three new beds and linens for the leprosy patients who need more medical attention as their disease progresses.

Just before Christmas 2016 members of the Rajahmundry 
Stake assembled large fruit baskets for the members of the Colony.

What joy in giving and lifting the hearts of people who have so little!

Members of the Church and residents of the Colony both felt overwhelming thankfulness in giving...

and receiving...

Afterward we all sang Christmas carols and enjoyed the time together.

As we left, a little girl from one of the families affected by leprosy gave Elder and Sister Newton flowers that she had made. A sweet gesture from a sweet child.

On 15 March 2017 we went back to Simon and helped distribute 25 Micro Cellular Rubber (MCR) custom-made shoes for each person suffering with leprosy. Another Christian church coalition had donated tied quilts made by people in the U.S.

Ramesh, whose mother has leprosy, has studied tailoring. He was given a new specialized sewing machine by Rising Star Outreach. Here, he presents a bag that he stitched for Elder Newton. 

One last photo with everyone at Simon Leprosy Colony--it was time to say good bye. We love their smiles!!

Pushkara Matha Recovery Center

The Pushkara Matha Rehabilitation Center deals with all addictions, but mostly alcohol addiction. India is in an upswing of people with alcohol addiction.  

It is the only treatment center in a six-district area so they treat men from different areas in Andhra Pradesh State. The center provides physical, mental, and financial counseling—which helps the patients become more self-reliant and successful in their recovery.

The center provides men with a 30-day program comprising detoxification, individual and family counseling, and group therapy and activities. They have a 90% success rate of people participating in their program.  This center takes 15 men at a time.

When we visited for the first time in November 2016, we visited with the ladies who attend the adult day care center part of Pushkara and helped serve them lunch. LDS Charities was able to provide the day care center with some long tables for their dining room.

Sisters from the Rajahmundry Stake enjoyed putting 200 hygiene kits together for those men who will be coming to the center for treatment.

LDS Charities provided new lights, fans, tables, chairs, cooking pots and utensils.  They also provided two blood pressure and two glucose monitors.

Part of the adventure was shopping for the sheets, pillow cases and pillows.
The wholesale bedding area of town is so crowded with people, bicycles, and auto rickshaws that we had to hire a bicycle rickshaw to haul our purchases back out to Raju's car.

We celebrated the completion of the project on 24 Feb 2017.

It was combined with the engagement ceremony and celebration of the Center Director's daughter, so there were lots of people present!

Sister Newton, Elder Newton and Augustus were all asked to speak.

Elder Newton was also asked to give a blessing prayer for the new couple.

A successful project and a great celebration!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

February 2017 in Rajahmundry

Bicycles are the number two most popular mode of transportation in India. Motorcycles are number one.

Here we see the intense study of a bike repair technician and, we believe, his customer as the bike is reassembled after a rigorous repair. There are hundreds of bike shops in Rajahmundry alone. Thousands in the State of Andhra Pradesh, and who-knows how many in all of India! 

Darla made a Family Home Evening game with pictures glued to blocks of wood. At home, we would just go to a toy store and find several toy objects like these pictures.

This is the "Grab Bag" game where you pull out an object and then tell a gospel story relating to the picture.

She made three of these. They all will be given away soon.

Here is a nice cabbage we found at Spencer's Market last week. It cost about 14 cents. Most food is inexpensive, unless it is imported.

Random shots on our morning walk:

Two workers visiting on the street...

Monkeys doing whatever they want!

If a window is open and they want something... they are in and out and you have lost it!

The morning dishes...

In honor of the "Board of Directors" who meet at Hind's Quick Stop", we present the Rajahmundry "Board of Directors". They meet daily and conduct the neighborhood business, whether or not it needs it...

In honor of all Hoddies of the world.  This is the Heavyweight Division...

We calculated that the 30 brick in each of those pans weighs about 120 pounds. These guys lift and carry these brick all day long, week after week. No gloves. No shoes. Just a long piece of cloth that is fashioned into a pad for the top of the head. Notice that it takes two of them to lift the pan to the top of the hoddie's head. He also just misses the horizontal concrete beam of the first floor on the building by about half-an-inch as he passes into the structure and up the stairs. Can you say "Chiropractic Adjustment" or "Permanent Impairment?"

At the park where we walk, the gardner starts trimming the trees over the walking area the first week of February. 

Temperatures range from a low of 65 F to a high of 92 F.

Soon the high will be in the 120s F.

Tuna casserole on Saturday afternoon...

Amazing how "comfort food" changes when you are half-way around the world from home.

And she made it WITHOUT
mushroom soup. She made a scratch white sauce and tossed in some Domino's Pizza seasoning and there it is!!

Woman on her porch Katakoteswaram.

Typical construction of home in village Katakoteswaram 
10 Feb 2017

Wiping old and adding new to the Project Board 
9 Feb 2017

Washing in the River 
10 Feb 2017

Power Plant in East Godavari 
10 Feb 2017

Mangos on the tree, Rajahmundry
14 Feb 2017

There has been a Diet Coke famine in Rajahmundry for two months!!

We found the last two at the airport while waiting for reschedule a cancelled flight to Bangalore...

  Pure joy 11 Feb 2017

In case you did not know...

The pot at the end of the rainbow has a door and a lock on it...

Valentine's lunch at Regency Hotel 
14 Feb 2017

Raju's parents at a pre-wedding gathering of family for the marriage of Raju's cousin, Kumar Neelapu to Srimounika Karry 13 Feb 2017

Kumar & Srimounika Marriage--15 Feb 2017

Kumar & Srimounika Marriage--blessing couple 15 Feb 2017

Kumar & Srimounika Marriage--Elders Enjoying lunch 15 Feb 2017

Kumar & Srimounika Marriage--Elders Rahul & Magnusson 15 Feb 2017

Kumar & Srimounika Marriage--Brother and Sister Kollu, 15 Feb 2017

Bishop Mummidivarapu at the Stake Center on a Monday night!

Caught 'Ya!!

Family Home Evening at Newton's apartment with the Elders and Raju family.

Elder Newton and Elder Prittis, Bangalore 12 Feb 2017

Friends at the park, Feb 2017

Gardner fixing his broom at the park, Feb 2017

We think this is an iguana--on the street while walking to the park

We found this photo of Elder and Sister Matthews (and their son Kenny) at their new dairy in Cambodia.  The name of the dairy is:

"Moo Moo Dairy"

A GREAT name!!

Elder and Sister Matthews are from Alpine, Utah and will be replacing us in May 2017 as we end our service in India.

We found another work crew unloading a truckload of brick.

Notice, these guys wear no gloves, no shoes and usually work in shorts. It takes them about 10 minutes to unload all those brick and stack the neatly.

While shopping one day in Rajahmundry we ran across this group of people on a pilgrimage to their Hindu Temple nearby. Notice the Indian flutes and drums--they dance their way to the Temple. 

Near that same area we found these lighted Hindu symbols. The image on the left is Ganesh--the god of success and wisdom.

One day we stopped to look at a banana orchard. Notice the long conical-shaped black growth at the end of the young bananas--this is the banana bunch flower. If it does not fall off at a certain time, the orchard care-taker will cut it off, ensuring larger bananas to harvest.

In the same vicinity we found (top left) Mangos, (top right) Coconuts, 

(bottom left) Papaya and (bottom right (Jack Fruit)

While walking one morning we found the Indian Fuller Brush man!

How cool!!

Sometimes our little friends call and waive to us as we walk back from the park in the morning

There is a neighborhood water spigot near the park. On this day, the water was not flowing in their apartments--it happens quite a lot. Here we see neighbors gathering to get water from the park gardener's hose because there was no other water available. They all wait patiently for their turn to fill their containers.

On Feb 27th and 28th we joined with Elder and Sister Henrie at our Tumkur/Gubbi Taluk water well project near Bengaluru.

Contractor Arvind Srinivas and Site Monitor Nathan Arockia greeted Sister Newton and Sister Henrie with beautiful flowers as they picked us up to go to the villages.

We first inspected the project for a day, then celebrated the completion of one segment--well, overhead pressure tank and distribution system.

We turned on another segment that does not have a pressure tank finished or a distribution system in place.

The workers nearby were busy mixing up concrete for the electrical control platform.

Larry grabbed one of their shovels and started mixing the cement.

They were NOT expecting that! 

Incidentally, we are doing this right on the roadway next to the well. 

The next day was celebration and inauguration day.

The children of the high school sang...

Local dignitaries spoke...

It was a good time.