Thursday, July 25, 2013

"Do not ask for whom the bell tolls . . ." -- John Donne

Very sad here today.  Lusi, who has been out on maternity leave but has worked for us for seven years, lost her husband yesterday.  He died after a long illness leaving Lusi with three small sons and nine-months pregnant.  The entire staff went to the funeral and Juliana (who is Lusi's half-sister, will be out for several days).  Death is such a common occurrence here but is still so very painful and destructive of lives and livelihoods.  We will do what we can to keep Lusi and her kids going until the baby is born and she is able to come back to work in a few months.  She was the source of much joy here and has been missed terribly while she has been gone.  Her smile and joy of life is such an asset in a world like this one.  We are all very sad and worried about her and her immediate future.  We will do what we can and what we are allowed to do by the culture but we will make sure that neither she nor her children go hungry.  We have already agreed to pay for the medical bills from the birth and hope that gives her some comfort at a time when when she needs so much.
      The six scholarship students came back today for the three hours of paperwork required to get their tuition paid and to keep the school or anyone else from using the checks for anything else.  We give each a voucher with a hand-stamp, number matching the check, and Karen takes individual pictures and makes each one an identity card that matches the check numbers.  It took us a couple of years to work this out, but we haven't had a single problem since we started doing it this way.  A couple of hours of our time is a small price to pay for them to get a good education and become good teachers.  We do what we can.

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