Friday, November 27, 2009


ACWR Sea Container Delivery

Three times a year ACWR (Apostolic Christian World Relief, my church / sending agency) sends a 40-45 foot sea container full of aid to various organizations here on the island. The fall container that just arrived was designated for; St. James Infirmary, Hopewell Community, Blossom Gardens Orphanage, New Beginnings Ministry, Manchester Infirmary, Santa Hill Community, and CCCD. General contents are as follows; rice, kidney beans, cooking oil, soap (bar and powder), clothing, school supplies, health kits, mattresses, and bedding.

Our team (Chad Huber, Kirk Plattner, Erin Davis, and myself) set out early Monday morning in order to be at the port when it opened at 9am. The customers broker we work through had confirmed that everything was ready for us, so we arrived in Montego Bay hoping to get everything delivered that was designated for the MoBay area, and then head up to the Deaf Village with the rest of the items Monday night. What were we thinking?!? Apparently either we have not learned our lesson that things never happen as quickly as we would like, or we are eternal optimists. Wouldn't you know, after sitting around the dock for almost 6 hours, we finally found out that their was a hang-up in the paper process, and someone in Kingston (opposite side of the island) couldn't find the letter that showed our container was released.

We crashed at the MoBay campus, and then headed back to the port Tuesday morning. This time we were able to get in, but had to wait an hour for our container to get moved from the waiting area to the pick up area. We unloaded the first half of the contents and set out to deliver them. Again, we wanted to unload all the MoBay deliveries then refill the box truck with the remaining items, and get it all done on Tuesday. The truck was a bit overloaded and had troubles making it up the hills in MoBay, so we didn't get done unloading until about 7:30 pm. We decided that I would stay back and bring the rest of the items up to the Deaf Village with the Jamaican truckers, and the rest of the team made the long trip back yet that night.

Wednesday morning we loaded the rest of the items into the box truck and left the port at 11:30 am, arriving at the Deaf Village a little after 4:30pm. It was a long 5 hour trip, but I was thankful everything arrived safely. We unloaded at JDV and the Manchester Infirmary, and were down with everything just before 8pm. Looking back and and remembering we wanted to get it all done on Monday was a bit comical. But I was just glad we were done on Wednesday night and didn't have to continue on Thursday.

Here are some pictures and video highlighting the process.

Kirk removing the shipping mattresses.

Transferring Load #1 from the container to the delivery box truck.

About halfway done, as two dock workers stand around and later expect to be paid :)

Chad squinting, Kirk acting like he's busy, and Erin smiling....I love my team!

I had to find a stick to hold up the power lines that were handing too low for the truck.

Delivering aid to the St James Infirmary.

My view out the window of the delivery truck.

Don't you know you should stay away from powerlines! Be careful my friend! I don't need to see you get extra crispy.

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