Update 1-13-16

January 13, 2016

We arrived in Ghana last evening from our stay in Freetown, Sierra Leone. Early this morning we traveled 3 hours to Nyitawuta Village, Ghana. Nyitawuta is a very remote village of 250 people who desperately need a clean water well. The entire village greeted us today to listen to us and we to listen to their needs. The village chief indicated that for many in the village we are the first white people they had ever seen. The disparity between our lives in America and the poor of sub-Sahara Africa is profound and sobering for many on our team who have never been to the continent. Seven Hills Global Outreach sponsors nearly 500 farmers (and by extension over 4000 family members) here in Ghana through our micro-finance initiative. Photos included on Instagram are of various team members dancing with the children in the village. Wonderful day - all are well, transformed in their appreciation for all we have, and committed to doing some small thing to help transform the world. More tomorrow as our trip to West Africa comes to a close.
- David Jordan
See the photos from today on Instagram>

Update 1-12-16

January 12, 2016

It’s hard to imagine all of the events, visits to villages, and time spent with the children of Sierra Leone we’ve been engaged in these past few days. The accompanying photos are from Sunday afternoon when we dedicated a new school in Bo, Sierra Leone that Seven Hills Global Outreach and our donor partners built for 450 children. Later this morning - Monday- we return to Freetown and fly to out SHGO partner in Accra, Ghana to see our work in supporting microcredit efforts for rural farmers. Our team has been truly amazing with everyone fully engaged and truly moved by this experience. We end each day with a group meeting and share the personal “pearl” which resonated with each of us throughout the day. You would have to be here to fully appreciate the insight and compassion shared by each team member. Some “pearls” are funny but most are deeply personal and moving recalling a particular child or scene. When each of us returns we will all walk away with memories which will bind us all for a lifetime. This is true for all the teams I’ve had the joy of taking to eight developing countries throughout the past 6 years. Its our way for Seven Hills to “give back” to the world some small gift for the many blessings we enjoy. Hope you enjoy the photos of this joyful Sunday spent with the school kids in Bo.  Sarah just loving every second with her many new friends; Deeanna checking out selfies with those who flock around her; several of the little girls who have been given this gift of education - some for the first time; Maya entertaining her first of many adoring groups of children; Mareill from our partner ‘HoneyDrop Beverages’ is a constant source of fascination and joy to the children wherever we travel;  Brian Stockton from representing our donor friends from Garland, Texas distributing pencils collected by a 12 year old girl and her school class from Garland (thank you Madeline!); my SHGO associate Spencer Gale; my good friend and Seven Hills board member John Altomare is as always, fully engaged; and a few photos of the school children. Everyone is well and excited to be in this very poor but joy filled country. When we return we will work on new efforts to bring solar electricity to our medical clinic, a new laboratory to perform blood tests and screen for water born diseases, more clean water wells and toilets, needed school supplies, etc.  Our team looks forward to sharing their stories with our families and friends when we return.
- David Jordan
See the photos from today on Instagram>

Update 1-10-16

January 10, 2016

It’s Sunday in Sierra Leone and everyone is well and very excited about all they are seeing and experiencing in this beautiful country. Poverty is deeply engrained but the generosity and genuine affection among the people of Sierra Leone is palpable. We just returned from a 2.5 hour church service where singing and dancing is the norm. The photo included in this update is of a group shot of our entire team outside of the Zion Church with a group of children. More photos on Instagram are of Anthony Consigli loving every second of his time spent with little one in the village of Torbu; Brian Stockton representing the wonderful churches of Garland, Texas who donate to Seven Hills so that we can create new clean water wells. This is the latest of the hand dug wells made possible by the proceeds derived by Running4Water race in Texas; and finally, a shot of one of the many toilets we are installing in as many of the 22 remote villages in our SHGO - Zion catchment. So far, we have 7 toilets constructed with 14 villages waiting patiently for their own. Clean water and sanitation has already saved the lives of dozens of women and children. Each village toilet costs $1800 USD; anyone reading this - we could use whatever financial assistance you or a group could offer to make more toilets and clean water wells available to the 13,000 villagers in our care in central Sierra Leone. What an incredible team we have here from New England; I am so happy they’ve decided to make a difference in the lives if the children we are privileged to serve here through Seven Hills Global Outreach. More tomorrow!
- David Jordan
See the photos from today on Instagram>

Update 1-9-16

January 9, 2016

It has been an incredible Saturday for our team as we traveled out to the original Bandawa village campus where Seven Hills and Zion Ministries have partnered since 2010. After a formal ceremony with villagers from several rural communities we briefly toured our campus , visited the new “Honey Drop” bee farming initiative, and then walked 7 or 8 miles through the bush to visit 4 villages where we have made possible fresh water wells and / or latrines for sanitation.
- David Jordan
See more photos from today on Instagram >

Update 1-8-16

January 8, 2016

All is well in Sierra Leone!  We are in Freetown and expecting a day of traveling through Freetown; the capital. Met earlier this morning with a representative from the US Embassy to talk about our need to raise funds for solar and wind power for our 2 schools and medical clinic in Bo. Later this afternoon we head out to Bandawa - 3 hour drive into the central part of the country. Everyone is well, excited, and ready to experience all that our SHGO -  Zion Ministries programs have here. More later.
- David Jordan
See more photos from today on Instagram >

Update 1-7-16

January 7, 2016

The Seven Hills team is on its way to Freetown, Sierra Leone. Earlier today we left Boston and arrived in Paris safely we are now boarding our flight from Paris to Freetown with arrival at 7:30 pm ( 2:30 pm Boston time). Tonight we stay in Freetown and head out to our medical clinic and school Wednesday morning. We are all well and excited to be in country.
- David Jordan

SHGO Trip to West Africa

Update from Sierra LeoneFrom January 6-16, 2016 our Seven Hills Global Outreach team returns once again to West Africa to further our humanitarian work in Sierra Leone and Ghana in conjunction with our local partners, Zion Ministries and HOCAP.

Our SHGO efforts in West Africa began in January 2010 with myself and 10 of my Clark University students.  Six years later we are helping to assist nearly 13,000 children and families in Sierra Leone and 3,500 individuals in Ghana through our medical center, schools, water and sanitation projects, and microfinance efforts.

This January 2016 trip includes Deeanna Leite, Sarah Dys, Maya Grevatt, Bryan Stockton, Mareill Kiernan, Robin Rhodes, Anthony Consigli, John Altomare, and Spencer Gale.  The purpose of this trip is to explore and understand international development efforts through a societal sustainability model which links economic development to social development to environmental development.  Our team will be working in a rural medical clinic and in rural “bush villages” of central Sierra Leone as well as participating in the dedication of a new 400 student school funded through SHGO and its incredible donor partners.  In Ghana, we will see firsthand the effect of economically empowering women and families through ‘microcredit’ and social enterprises such as bee-keeping and small animal raising.

My fervent hope is that each member of the “2016 SHGO Team to West Africa” comes back with new insights and experiences which will help shape our collective understanding of what can be done to help uplift the poorest of the poor. “If not us, then who?”

Look for my regular trip updates here at our Seven Hills Global Outreach website and on Twitter @SevenHillsGO.

Dr. David A. Jordan

Dr. David A. Jordan, DHA
Seven Hills Global Outreach