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28 March 2006

Page history last edited by PBworks 18 years ago

Tuesday 28 March 2006:


After a family wedding ... work!Arabella Churchill


Today Haggis and I left Australia en route for Banda Aceh, after our 5-day visit to Byron Bay to attend my son Jake's wedding to his beautiful fiancee Kim.


We had only returned to England from an overseas Children's World International visit at the beginning of February (I had been leading Performance/Workshop/Play Tours for tsunami-affected children in Sri Lanka and Thailand, and Haggis, my brilliant juggling husband, had joined the Tour in Thailand - please see separate diaries for details and photos of all the above-mentioned Tours) and then my son decided to get married in Byron Bay, Australia, on 25th March.


The thought of more air travel and jet lag appalled me, but we love Jake and Kim dearly, so Haggis and I really felt we had to be at their wedding. I looked at the map - what a very long way! While looking at the map, I realised that Sumatra would not be too much of a detour on our way back to England - and we decided that we would do a little "add-on" trip for Children's World International, to visit Banda Aceh on the northernmost tip of Sumatra, which had suffered so dreadfully in the tsunami.


Good value


Because we are already paying our own way to Australia, it will cost Children's World International very little for Haggis and me to undertake this visit to Aceh. Our intention is to run as many juggling performances and workshops for tsunami-affected children as possible, while at the same time "reccying" the situation out there, making as many useful contacts as possible and seeing whether (God and funders willing!) it would be appropriate and useful to send a larger Performance/Workshop/Play Tour to Aceh towards the end of 2006.


Making contacts


The province of Aceh received the full brunt of the tsunami - a truly enormous number of people died - 130,000, with a further 36,000 "missing", not yet declared "dead" - and we are told that more than 450,000 people are still homeless, with many having to live in tented camps and barracks. The only reason CWI hasn't visited Aceh with our post-Tsunami Tours before is that we had no contacts there and found it extremely hard to make useful contacts from England. So that is why we are heading there now - it is only by being there that we will be able to ascertain the situation, do what we can in the way of performances and workshops right now and, hopefully, make plans for CWI to take more Tours there in the future.


So, today, 28 March, we waved goodbye to my son and new daughter-in-law in beautiful Byron Bay, drove up to coast to Brisbane and caught the 9 hour flight back to Singapore, where we will be staying the night. A 5.00 am alarm call tomorrow, and on to Indonesia and Aceh!








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