It’s a new year, and along with it a new beginning for Asili! Late last month, the doors to Asili’s third clinic in Mudaka were opened for business. Months of hard work paid off as Zone 3 became a reality!
To build excitement, in the days leading up to the grand opening Asili staff held an open house for all those who wished to see the inside of the clinic. Curious families walked through the clinic’s halls, admiring the neatly stacked waiting numbers, the brightly colored animals on the wall, the clean consultation rooms.
The King of Kabare gave the new Asili zone the warmest welcome we’ve ever received since the start of the project, saying “Karibu” (meaning welcome) followed by a two handed handshake – the Congolese way to show gratitude. Each staff member was greeted this way, welcoming a new era for Asili.
At the water kiosk, women sang Kiswahili songs, dancing their way through the long lines of people gathered to buy water. Everyone enjoyed big glasses of cool, clean, refreshing Asili water, excited that a functioning water point was finally available in their town. And there’s not only one place to get clean water in Mudaka now – there are eight Asili water points spread out over a 12-16 kilometer radius. Access to easily accessible, clean water will have an enormous impact on the town.
And, business is truly booming. Within days of the grand opening of Zone 3, Asili saw over 40 patients at the clinic and sold more than 260,000 liters of safe drinking water. Membership has surged with over 55 people registered in the first week alone! Mudaka is a bustling market town – more people than ever before are excited to use Asili’s services.
Mama Salome, one of our all-star staff members in Congo, went out to speak with the townspeople in Mudaka to hear directly from them what they thought of Asili. She was met with an overwhelming sense of excitement and gratitude. “Asili has brought true development in Mudaka,” said one woman. “Asili gives value to Mudaka. If Asili could be a person we could vote for him,” said another. “Asili gives us hope of living long. May God bless Asili so that it can be everywhere in Congo, in Africa, and all over the world.”
Mama Salome reported that everyone is excited to have Asili in their community, because, as she put it, “Asili brought the development that they’ve missed for many years. Many organizations have promised to bring water to them, but they did not succeed. Asili is the only one.”
All of this would not be possible without the goodwill of everyday people in Mudaka. Families allowed the water pipes to pass through their land. Volunteers stepped up to help landscape the space around the clinic. And a team of plumbers, nurses, salespeople, and managers make it all happen. The third clinic has three nurses, including our head nurse Adrienne who has worked at all three Asili clinics – she’s now our resident nurse expert.
As we move forward in this next stage in Asili, we’re thrilled to have the people of Mudaka and our incredible staff behind us, every step of the way. This is the start of something big.