My first day as a volunteer for CWB was chaotic, exhausting, heart-breaking and a huge amount of fun, often at the same time.
We (that’s me, Jonathan, Lesley and Rich) landed in Kigali at around 9AM. We were met by Lee and Greg who were already here and by the legend that is Eddie, our driver for the trip. Almost straight away we were taken to the Rwanda Genocide memorial. I will not be able to describe how it felt to be there and to see the graves of more than a quarter of a million people, all that I can say is that it was one of the most moving experiences of my life.
After the memorial we began our journey east to Kayonza in the east of the country. CWB haven’t been out here before so nobody was sure what to expect. The country side was beautiful and when you’re out here you realise that Rwanda is called the land of a thousand hills for a reason.
Our first coaching session began with a game of cricket, which was going along very nicely when we received word that our second session (scheduled for two hours later) was already beginning. Greg jumped into the van to see what the score was and then sent Eddie back for me Leslie and rich, Leaving Jonathan and Lee to run the first session.
The school we went to is called FAWE Girls School. As we arrived we could see Greg and Innocent (one of the Rwandan coaches) marshalling the session was great fun as the girls were taught catching, fielding, bowling and batting drills and the all-important A B C T messages. Meanwhile Rich was entertaining a group of about sixty children telling them about WWE (honestly). The highlight of the session personally was around two hundred school girls howling with laughter at my ham fisted attempts to learn a Rwandan folk dance, although I think secretly they were impressed.
Once the sessions were wrapped up we decamped back at the hotel and enjoyed a few beers. After they day we’d had and the fact that I hadn’t really slept in about thirty hours I have to admit that I was tucked up in bed by 9:15. What I can say is that the day was one of the most memorable of my life and I’m sure if the team continues to work in the same way throughout this fortnight we’ll have a fantastic trip.