Day 1 - Orientation in Zandspruit

Jo Burt and Dottie Newsome, volunteer nurses from Utah, USA are here in South Africa for two months to help with the HOPE Centre Program. They will be posting frequent blogs about their adventures...
Dottie Newsome and Jo Burt arrived in Johannesburg from the U.S. on Saturday January 19 ready to embark on their two month volunteer placement with Project Hope, South Africa. After a weekend of acclimatizing to Johannesburg and a warm welcome from Stefan Lawson, Country Director for Project Hope & his family, the real work for Dot and Jo began:
Monday morning came very early with the time change and jet lag, but we were excited to begin our adventure!  We travelled to the Project Hope offices and Hope Centre Clinic where we met the staff and the new Community Health Workers (CHW’s) who were beginning the latest Health Screening Project with us.  The staff are great and Lebo who is the trainer for the CHW’s is fabulous.  We spent the morning with the teams and did orientation with them.  There are 10 CHW’s and they are extremely excited to be working with Project Hope. 
We spent time with Stefan learning more about the project and what our specific responsibilities would be and then we met with Carol , the Operations Manager, H.R. Director and ‘jack of all trades’ who further oriented us to the community. She was a wealth of knowledge and made us feel very welcome and helped us understand roles and details about our stay. 
For the afternoon, we verified screening competency of the CHW’s.  Competencies included measuring for: height, weight, abdominal circumference, BMI, random blood glucose, and Blood Pressure in each arm.  The staff were great and passed off the skills learned with confidence.  We divided in to our teams and each team was assigned an area of the community to conduct the screenings in.
Then home to our apartment.  We were pretty tired and glad to get home, but took advantage of the beautiful weather and went walking around our neighborhood for a while.  I am afraid that we were in bed fairly early.


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