Monday, January 20, 2014

Ed Teaching Gates 1

Ed is trying to teach these men everything he knows.  There is so much for them to learn, that reaches beyond the instructions of how to pour concrete or lay bricks. 

One of his primary concerns is teaching them about Safety.  These guys have never been around power tools, and he prays every night for their safety on the job.

He is teaching them critical thinking.  The Congolese have been "survivors" for so long that they only know how to live in the present.  He has been teaching them to think ahead and prepare for future work.  They all worked together to make saw-horses to help make the work in the future easier.  Ed says they have been life savers! 

 Teaching them teamwork is invaluable!  Usually we mix our own concrete and "pour" it manually with wheelbarrows of cement.  However... on this job, our main contractor is from Utah, and he insisted on using trucks, to get into the difficult areas and down to the 2nd level.

Occassionally he has to holler at them to "Keep Working".  The concept of not sitting on the job, or not standing around and talking as you watch the other men work is a new concept to many of them.  When he hollars, it is usually with a big "Aye, Yai, Yai, Yai, Yai!" 

He is teaching the importance of being exact in measurements, and end results.  
We thought we were moving to Kananga.   On Ed's sad, last day with these students, we received the email saying that they had cancelled our transfer and we would stay in Kinshasa, where we were still really, really needed.  When I called him and told him we weren't leaving, he turned to his students and told them that he gets to stay in Kinshasa.  Many cheererd, but this sweet man knelt down and praised the Heavens for keeping Elder Gates in Kinshasa to complete these students and trainers educations!  ( Ed had him do a reinactment for the camera.)   They have become a close team and they love Ed as much as he loves them!
Note that the slab (floor) is almost ready to pour... As I type this, they are pouring their big slab, today.  I am excited to hear how it went!  They have never done anything like this before. 
One of the main things that Ed  is teaching is that they should love their jobs, have fun, and love having the opportunity to create something that makes the world a better place! 

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