I woke up nervous: nervous about translation, nervous about setting up, nervous about making some huge cultural gaffe that would offend all the medics we were teaching. We had breakfast in our stunning guesthouse and went to the truck only to find a flat tire.
An hour later, we were on our way up the mountain to teach.
We had a class of 12 medics and a handful of expat medical professionals (midwives, midwife students, RNs, and MDs) who were all eager and ready to start.
The curriculum is very hands-on. We taught for a few minutes (all facilitated by our excellent translator), and then the medics got to try their new skills on the NeoNatalies. Then we’d teach some more, and practice some more. The babies were a hit.
Some of the medics are talented actors and leapt into the drama of the simulated birth with gusto, which made for a fun day of teaching. They were attentive, quick to learn, and so gracious with us. If we were terribly offensive, we never would have known.
I guess when you’re far from home, no one knows quite as well as a refugee how to make you feel at ease.