Sunday, 13 April 2008

car destroyed after Cusuimi visit

hi there,
we've just got back from visiting our latest project community Cusuimi. unlike our normal communities, we can access Cusuimi via road and canoe rather than having to fly or walk. However, after this gruelling trip, I think I'd rather fly! we left 7am Tuesday and arrived in Cusuimi on 2pm Wednesday. it was quite an eventful trip... the car is looking sorry for itself with
  • both front indicator lights falling out,
  • one headlight lost,
  • leaking radiator
  • flat tyre
  • leaking valve on spare tyre
  • lost mud flap
  • various screws found in the car that we don't know what they belong to
  • many new rattling noises
  • mud inside and out
Flying is much easier, quicker and less damaging... just costs much more!

we had a good time in Cusuimi. we taught hygiene classes, had lots of community meeting to make sure everyone know what they had to do for the project and Alfredo walked the whole community making measurements for where the pipe will be going. We now have to buy all the materials and they have to start collecting all the stone and sand for the cement and start digging the trenches for the pipes.

we are off to Amazonas and Santa Rosa tomorrow to prepare them for their projects, this time in airplane!

Friday, 4 April 2008

April Praise and Prayers

Thank you for your encouraging emails these past weeks. Please keep us in your prayers!


We have made progress on the convenios with ECORAE and the Municipio. We are waiting for the Municipio to transfer the money and we are reviewing the draft of the convenio with ECORAE.

Alfredo's sister graduated last week with a degree in infant psychology.

I have made it to 14 weeks of pregnancy without morning sickness, a true blessing!

That HCJB have been able to help the victims of the flooding on the Ecuadorian coast. They sent medical teams and radio listeners donated clothes and food items to be distributed.


With convenios signed, we have to start construction work! Pray for the logistics, the traveling (10hours from Shell to where the canoe picks us up!) and for our health.

For the pregnancy. I will reduce my jungle traveling and only supervise the Amazonas project where I can stay in missionary housing in Makuma. Pray that I don't get parasites or malaria.

For Alfredo's Dad, Fernando. He resigned from his job last month because he was being forced to sign corrupt contracts. Pray that he can quickly find a new job.

Foe extra staff in the Shell office. Alfredo would like to have another engineer in the water projects office to share the load when I stop traveling. (If you know of any engineers who might be interested in a short or long-term placement let me know!)


Alex and Alfredo Leon

Two become Three

We are expecting a baby! The due date is the 26th September. We plan to stay in Shell and give birth in the HCJB Global hospital where Alfredo was born! We will be moving into a larger house on the hospital compound in the summer so that we have space for baby and visitors. For those worried about all our travelling… the doctors have given the all clear for the moment and I will only supervise the ‘easy’ project in Amazonas where I can stay in ‘luxury’ with the missionaries in Makuma.

Helping Partners in India

I (Alex) joined the medical team sent from Ecuador to India in January. The purpose of the trip was to encourage HCJB Global partners in India and research the possibilities of future work in the country. I thought I was going to investigate the need for water projects in the country, but when we got there I found that the area we were in had very good water supplies: one village had 15 water pumps installed by the government! The only real sanitary engineering I got to do was unplug the toilet! However, I was not bored or idle! While the doctors and nurses saw patients in the villages and ran the pharmacy, I taught hygiene classes to the people waiting in line and helped Dorothy entertain the children.

The evenings were packed with classes to the nurses school and playing with the children in the orphanage where we were staying. At the end of the trip we were able to do a little sight-seeing and visited the Taj Mahal and Jaiphur.

In the beginning I found it difficult and frustrating not being able to communicate with the people without a translator and having to be careful what I talk about as Jesus is not accepted in the Muslim areas. How I take for granted in Ecuador the ability to freely talk about God in Spanish and people being receptive.

I feel very privileged to have been invited on the trip and it was a lovely opportunity to get to know better the lovely Ecuadorian doctors and other missionaries who were on the team.

While I was gone, Alfredo kept busy in Shell and Quito: sorting out details for the next projects, meeting government officials to decide contracts and preparing for the class in February. The original plan was that his brother would be in Shell with Alfredo, but Josue got a job in Quito just as I left, so Alfredo was forced to find new friends in Shell to reduce the boredom! He had a fun holiday with his family over ‘Carnival’ (the weekend before pancake day) when they all came to Shell to visit.