We had a unique opportunity to fly in the Caravan to the coast. It was such a great day for the two of us. It's especially exciting for us to get out and see the countryside, and meet other ministries MAF works in conjunction with--typically Rob is hard at work in the hangar making sure the plane can go where it's needed, and I'm at home helping/schooling the kids.
Here we are getting ready to land in Tamatave. A fairly large port city. They have the largest port in the country. This is where most of the container ships come in and unload. Our truck was brought here from Germany, as well as our personal items when we initially moved to Madagascar.
Our transport from the airstrip to the ship.
Our first stop was the Hope Center. This is a large building, with 200 beds. Because of the large number of patients traveling great distances to receive treatments (by bus, some are traveling days), Mercy Ships is using this building for longer post-op care for those who require it. They are fed and housed until they are ready to make the long journey back to their village.
Behind the Hope Center this is where the patients are fed, and the laundry is done in the far left hand corner.
The reception area of the ship. We took special note of the hanging on the wall. Their clear mission of being an extension of Jesus' hands.
Looking down on the cafe. There is a computer lab for the members up above. This was described to us as their "living room." Approximately 400 crew live on board the ship which isn't much bigger than a BC ferries. So they definitely don't have their own cabins and living space. All of the space (besides their bed) is shared.
Families live aboard the ship. There are about 45 kids who live and school on board. This was a little play area we came across on an outer deck of the ship. A little too reminiscent of BC Ferries... don't know if I could live on one, honestly. :)
The highlight of the trip for Rob, for sure. We were taken into the engine room at the bottom.
Our plane ride home.
A small village in the middle of nowhere (quite literally). A stark reminder of how isolated hundreds of thousands of people are, and how needed MAF is in Madagascar.