Retired Blakeney teacher Claude completes latest heartfelt African mission

Claude Scott delivering the keys to the new house built with money from the Glaven Africa Mission. P

Claude Scott delivering the keys to the new house built with money from the Glaven Africa Mission. Picture: CLAUDE SCOTT - Credit: Archant

Helping build a house in a Rwandan village was not something retired teacher Claude Scott expected to do be doing aged almost 80.

Work by Africa Glaven Mission members to construct a new house for a survivor of the Rwandan genocid

Work by Africa Glaven Mission members to construct a new house for a survivor of the Rwandan genocide. Picture: CLAUDE SCOTT - Credit: Archant

But the Blakeney man has embarked on his latest mission to the African country which holds a special place in his heart.

Mr Scott led a group of north Norfolk people with enough water filters to provide clean water for 7,000 people. Supporters had also raised £3,500 to build a new family home in one of the poorest parts of the country, close to the Congolese border.

As well as paying for materials and labour the team lend a hand building a new house for Denise, a widow of the 1994 Rwandan genocide to share with five children.

The group spent time creating mud balls for the walls of the house and hammering in nails. Mr Scott, 79, grew up in Congo with his missionary father, but it was a volunteer trip to neighbouring Rwanda in 2010 that re-ignited his involvement in the region.

Supplies being taken across the Rwanda Congo border. Picture: CLAUDE SCOTT

Supplies being taken across the Rwanda Congo border. Picture: CLAUDE SCOTT - Credit: Archant


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Since then the assistant clergyman has taken part in further trips with wife Ethne and fellow members of the Glaven Valley group of churches.

'Each time we go we think it will be our last time,' said Mr Scott. 'If you look at our age profile you would wonder why we go to Rwanda, but the place just grabs you. More and more people want to get involved and the community has really taken this on board.'

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'The new house is made of wood and can be constructed in a couple of weeks. It has a water harvesting system catching rain from the roof, which from the point of view of the person living there is almost heaven.

'Denise had been living in a home with just two rooms and one had a cow in it.'

During the trip water filters were also delivered across the border to the Congo along with supplies of sheets, toothbrushes, towels, toothpaste, reading glasses and wind up torches.

'You come back humbled and inspired and it makes you think twice about the values we have in this country,' said Mr Scott. 'The genocide devastated Rwanda and affected everyone in some way or another. The progress they have made is unbelievable, even in the last two years there has been a massive difference.'

To find out more visit www.africaglavenmission.wordpress.com

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