Overall Rating:/ 10Mwandi is a beautiful and welcoming village in Western Province Zambia, 2 hours west of the hub of Livingstone. I have visited four times and each time I am invited in with open arms by the local villagers and Paula's camp. The atmosphere is so friendly and inclusive that all volunteers become part of the village and can see the huge impact their work is having.
Working with the doctors and nurses at Mwandi Mission Hospital is a wonderful experience, it is an insight into the struggles a clinic with limited funding and a wide population faces. I was able to take part in basic clerking of patients as well as observe consultations and births on the labour ward. It is a unique experience and very eye opening.
Working on the housing project is equally rewarding. Many children orphaned by AIDS require rehousing with family members whose already limited houses are not up to taking in large numbers of children. You will be there from start to finish for the whole building process and a long lasting, safe house can be achieved in little over a week, causing a dramatic change to the children's life's. The stability and support that a new family unit and home brings for these children is undeniable and you can be part of it every step of the way, celebrating the successes and they future you have brought the children.
Mwandi is like a second home and Paula is like a second mum. You are so well looked after and supported each step of the way, after making such a huge difference to the people of this wonderful village leaving will be far harder than you think.