Bulembu: Service Day 2 outdoors


The crews working on the physical plant made a lot of progress on the first day, but started running into roadblocks. None of the battery packs for the rechargeable power tools were keeping a charge, slowing work on the toilet doors. They finally managed to finish hanging new doors on the stalls by the end of the day after borrowing a power cord from one of the other crews.

They also put new sinks in both the boys and girls sides, and added some new drainage to relieve some trouble spots.

They also replaced several of the window panes along the back of the toilets.


The building used for the centre is actually a former bar–one of the many repurposed buildings in Bulembu. Like many of the buildings in town, it and the building next door have metal multipane windows that apparently date to the 1930s. Lots of glass needed replacement. Our glaziers got off to a bit of a slow start learning how to trim glass panes without breaking them, but they figured out the tricks and used up all the panes that were purchased before we arrived.


They painfully scraped and chiseled out the old putty, replaced the panes, and then used huge bags of old-fashioned window putty to hold and seal the panes into the metal windows. Trimming window glass to size was relatively easy–stretching undersized glass to fit into larger panes turned out to be the biggest challenge of the week.



Trash is stored outdoors behind the building next door. It was unsafe to leave bins of trash in an area full of children, so our crew built a sturdy lockable wooden enclosure around the garbage storage area.


The ICC volunteers completely repainted both the building used for the centre, and the building with the toilets.




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