In Swaziland, you find things either change very quickly or not at all. We have seen huge advances in treatment for HIV/AIDS in the past couple years, but other things like infrastructure (electricity and roads) seems to be going back in town.
Technology is one area that seems to move forward either quickly or not at all. Lately we have seen some incredible advances that have allowed us to work at a new level of efficiency. The cellular networks were recently upgraded to allow for fast (but expensive) access on a new 3G network. We can now skype and have reliable access to essential tools like email. We have also installed a new internal wireless network on the mission that allows staff members to communicate back and forth and share documents — a luxury unimaginable just 6 months ago.
These new capabilities have also allowed us to form new connections with the outside world. As you can probably tell if you are reading this post online, we have upgraded our web presence to include a revamped website while still maintaining all of the previous posts from the older blog. We have also set up a twitter account and a facebook page. You can subscribe to updates via email or put the feed into an aggregator like google reader. All of these tools will allow us to better share the story of Cabrini Ministries and keep you up to date on what is happening in rural Swaziland. Isn’t technology amazing?
In moving forward, it is certainly important that we remember where we have come from and how we got here. A very special thanks needs to go out to Erika Baehr for the behind the scenes, yet essential role she played in getting the first website up and going and keeping it updated. Despite the fact Erika has yet to travel to Swaziland, she has been able to share the stories of the mission as one who is truly ingrained into the ongoing work. Everything we have now is built on the work she did several years ago. Thank you Erika!
We also want to thank our friends at Cabrini College who have provided technical and practical support to our work. They not only assisted with the transition, but have provided on the ground input in areas such as marketing, business development, and education. A special thanks goes out to the leadership of the college as well as the implementors who helped to make this possible.
The more things progress in the Lubombo lowveld of Swaziland, the more we are remind just how connected we are with our friends and supporters across the world. Thank you all for everything you do and have done. We look forward to continuing to share the story that happens in the bush, but is facilitated by people world-wide.