February 2, 2014

Dear Family and Friends
As we write this we are weary to the bone! But by morning we will be up and at it again and glad for the opportunity to be in the Lords service here in Jamaica.
We have had:
1 full 3 day Wheelchair training course with the Salvation Army.
3 one day classes on how to assemble the new Rough Rider Wheelchairs. (They come un assembled!) and,
1 Refresher Course for those who were trained in 2010.
We have given out about 45 chairs this week to poor persons who either did not have a chair or to persons whose chairs were so worn down or broken that they were just about useless.  All persons who were able to receive a new chair were so thankful and left with great big smiles on their faces.  Many family members/caregivers were also positively affected by the new chairs given out during this past week.
We need to keep careful records on who is in each class and get their contact information so we can create a listing of all trained Wheelchair Assessors in Jamaica.
 During class they all learn the correct procedure to determine how to find and fit the correct chair for the different individuals they will come into contact with. There is a lot of information they must know about each person they Assess, in order to put them in a chair that will not only be of great help to them but one that will not do any damage to their already compromised health.
 The Trainers from Salt Lake, Steve Spencer and Shane Rosenberg have all the participants in the class sit in the wheelchairs all during the training so they get a feel for what it is like. In the picture below they are at the stations set up and the participants are getting a ‘hands on’ experience putting them together. You can See Elder Murdock sitting in the back. Staying in these chairs all day and maneuvering around in then is not always an easy task.
 They even had a wheelchair course the trainees had to go through with the two different styles of chairs we had at the training.  We had the Rough Rider chair for those who have a lot of outdoor use; and the Standard chair that is used indoors ( ie nursing homes, hospitals etc.) Some people are in a situation where they don’t go over rough terrain or their health restricts their ability to use a wheelchair independently, they would be Standard chair candidates.    The Rough Rider is made to go over bumps and rougher terrain than the Standard Chair.  The Rough Rider was a lot easier to go up the ramps.  You have more use of your arms than in the standard chair.
Finally the Day came when Trainees were actually using their new found knowledge to help others.  This gentleman lost both of his legs and his old chair was just trashed.   He was so happy with the new one he didn’t even take the old one back home with him.
 The gentleman in the picture below received a Standard Chair due to his loss of strength.  He won’t be going out for any long distance rides, but he was sure grateful to have a chair that he can be taken around the house in.
 Today, Sunday we went up to Ocho Rios to attend church and they were having a baptism after church.  Below you See Elder Hamilton from Springville preforming the baptism.  He is an awesome elder who has only been in Ocho for 4 weeks now.  He and his companion Elder Adams are a great team. The place is called Fishermen’s Wharf.  They use the boats all the time

Well the time is far spent and we are up early for another week of Wheelchair Trainings.  We have two more 3 day training classes this week and then we will continue with all of our regular project work.
We want to wish our oldest son Richard and his sweet wife Naloni  Happy Anniversary. We are so glad to have you both in our family.  We love you…We love our work here.  It seems like the time is flying by quickly, but we are really doing all we can to contribute to the people of Jamaica in the Lords way.  No other way will be of any good, and can in fact do more harm.  When things are done in the Lord way, it always turns out for the best.  Well the day is far spent and we must get this off to you our love ones.  As they say here:  Blessings, Respect Mon…
Love Mom and Dad
Elder and Sister Murdock