2016 Trip to Missionvale
Our 2016 volunteers arrived safely in Port Elizabeth on Sun 24th January after a 20 hour trip from Shannon via Heathrow and Johannesburg. They went immediately to Missionvale where the visited the tree under which Sr. Ethel began her mission 28 years ago. Over half of this year’s volunteers were first timers and they were both shocked with their initial surroundings and amazed that one woman could have achieved so much from such meagre beginnings under a tree.
It was early to bed for all, bar the seasoned volunteers, with the thought of the bus pulling out the following morning at 7:15 a.m. Well the bus did head for Missionvale at 7:15 as promised where all were greeted by Irish flag bearing care workers who perform this yearly ritual, no doubt organised by Sr. Ethel herself to show her appreciation for those who make the huge effort to be with her.
All the new volunteers were taken for a tour of the Missionvale Care Centre and School while the old timers immediately went to work with the knowledge from previous visits, that a good start to the tasks at hand will reap rewards when time will no doubt be running out come Friday evening. The place was a hive of activity with a procession of people pushing or pulling wheelbarrows, water pipes and cables.