Good evening, my name is Lloyd Babcock. My family has been involved with the C.Pp.S mission projects, in Kamloops, for over five years. My son Tyson went on the first trip to Tanzania from Kamloops in 2003 and my wife, Anna and I went with the 2005 group. Our daughter Lana has been involved by helping with fund raising projects.
I remember when Tyson came home from Tanzania, we met him at the airport in Vancouver and I asked him if he was glad to be home. He said to tell you the truth Dad, I would rather have stayed in Tanzania and you and Mom come there to see me. I was a little surprised by his answer but that is the affect working with the missions in Tanzania can have on you.
I would like to share a couple of my experiences while working with the C.Pp.S missions in Tanzania. We traveled up country from Dodoma to the missions of Kintinku, Chipamaugwa, Manyoni, Itigi, and Mkiwa. One village we stopped at was Sucamahala. About 50 of the people in this village of 3000 were living with leprosy. I had heard of leprosy before, in the bible, but never thought I would see anyone who actually had the decease. Some of the people had no fingers, no toes and if that wasn’t bad enough they were also blind. Now I found this pretty devastating, but they seemed to have adjusted and continued along with life as if everything was normal. There was this one elderly lady in particular who we met. We asked if she would like a candy, which they call pepe, she said, “I don’t know it might rot my teeth”. Then she laughed and we saw that she had no teeth to rot!! Even in her condition she still had a sense of humour! So next time you encounter what you think is a difficulty, like your electricity going out or your computer crashes maybe you’ll remember the elderly lady & the people of Sucamahala.
Our main project while in Tanzania was to erect a windmill in Iyumbu, a village with 3000-5,000 people living there. Before we arrived the water they drank was what pooled up in a hole, dug in a dried up river bed. The water reminded me of a mud puddle and they would drink this water with out boiling it!!
The people of Iyumbu really welcomed us into their village, singing Karibuni, Karibuni. They worked side by side with us and probably out worked us most of the time. Iyumbu is truly a poor village. They have no electricity, poor water and I don’t remember seeing a car. They live in dwellings made mostly from mud bricks and most of the kids wear the same dirty and torn clothes day after day. Unlike us, who live in our homes, they live outside, cook outside, eat outside, bath outside and visit outside, using their homes mostly for sleeping in. They were very friendly people, greeting us always smiling and shaking our hands. We really got to know them. Even though there was a language barrier, we still found a way to communicate and work together. When the well first produced water it was very exciting, the people sang, danced and we were very happy for them because we knew their world had changed forever.
Now some people in Canada have asked me, why are we going to Tanzania and spending all this money over there when we have poor & homeless people here in our own country. In Canada there are means of getting help from our governments and in Tanzania there is no such help, if it wasn’t for the mission groups that help in Tanzania I don’t know what life would be like for them. It would be devastating!!
It is people like all of you that make a difference in a country like Tanzania. I have seen the difference that the C.Pp.S mission projects have made in Tanzania. We are giving the people hope, hope that things can change, and hope that someone cares and will help them. If there were no people like you helping, then none of what the C.Pp.S mission projects is doing in Tanzania would be possible.
So on behalf of the people of Tanzania, the people with leprosy in Sucamahala, the people we met Paulo, Juma, Harry, Yona, Jonas, Janet, George, Emmanuel, Mama Katerina, Abyss, Raphael, Moses, Josephina and many, many more…….
Thank You Very Much!!