I was looking for a volunteer position and Silverlining needed someone to do the minutes of the Surrey group and for the board meetings as well as helping with their fundraising I started working for the charity in April 2018. I decided to come on the trip because I liked the idea of visiting Namibia and at the same time raising vital funds and supporting people who have experienced a brain injury.
My hopes for the expedition were that we are able to help at the local school in the remote area of Namibia where we are based and that we had a safe and happy time. My fears were that I wouldn’t get enough sleep as we were camping and that we wouldn’t get enough food (so I had a large bag of sweets in my holdall.)
My fears were overcome as I slept pretty well in my tent and there was plenty of food! My hopes were achieved as we completed 9 lessons,replaced 12 windows,painted two murals on the school wall, run a water pipeline into the school and we also created a community garden in the village all of these projects were very rewarding,and I did my bit as part of the team to enable the Silverliners to achieve a successful mission.
My personal achievements of the mission are that I survived Namibia without any illness! Helping with providing fresh clean water to the school,fixing the windows and teaching the children lessons hopefully broadening their knowledge.
My most memorable moment was seeing the wildlife including a lone ostrich,a beautiful oryx and a heard of elephants drinking at a watering hole. I identified ten different and new to me species of birds in the early mornings. Being treated to the San tribes people showing us their dances and craft skills and interacting with them despite having no language in common. I also saw a meteorite with its firery trail flash across the sky and the ISS-both early morning treats in the amazing African sky.
It was an amazing trip to meet a community of the previously nomadic San tribe in a very remote North-eastern part of Namibia, working with the children at the village school was very rewarding. It was also successful in as much as everyone in the Silverlinig group survived the daily 40-50+ degree heat and vicious bees.