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Christmas Update
Stewart & Anna-Claire Cusick

Merry Christmas everyone and a Happy New Year.  We wanted to get this update out before Christmas so that when you are struggling to cope this festive season without us you can at least sit down beside a cosy fire and read some riveting stories about us!!  Since our last update we have mainly been working away in our regular jobs in the hospital, so here’s a wee update on what we have done there. 
Anna-Claire's Job
For Anna-Claire she has been seeing patients in her own consultation room and has also finished categorising the list of drugs for the doctors.  The doctors are now working through the list of drugs and removing the duplicates and unused drugs.  She has also been to the jungle again twice on medical caravans.  One was with our fellow Latin Link member Doctor Jaap Bezemer and the other was with Voz y Manos together with the hospital.  Both trips were run quite differently and it was a good insight for Anna-Claire into how effective these caravans are.  She came back full of ideas of how to do it differently and improve things and she has been doing research into how these are successfully operated in other countries.  The main thing she is trying to work out is how to spend as little time in the jungle as possible as she isn’t really a huge fan of the food!  You can check out the images below for canape ideas for Christmas.  Both these trips were done by plane and were for 2 – 3 nights each.  With Jaap each evening he would teach from the bible to the community in their local language and with Voz y Manos they would also teach each evening but in Spanish.  Also, with Voz y Manos they took an Ecuadorian pastor especially to help with this side of the ministry.  She would be keen to do more of these in the future as the medicine can be interesting but this will depend on where she is placed by the government for her rural year.

And with that perfect segway we can give you an update on the rural year application.  Well, this has been a bit of a disaster but has also been a great lesson in learning to trust God.  Firstly, she found out too late that her degree needed to be registered under her cedula and not her passport number.  She was going to have to wait 30 days to get this changed which she didn’t have time for.  So, she headed to Quito to talk to some relevant people but wasn’t successful so we simply had to put our trust in God.  Last week before the application was due her degree was updated on a Saturday when the public offices aren’t even open, without any warning and ahead of schedule.  The next problem was that the system didn’t recognise her degree in English and there was no email address etc to contact anyone to sort it.  However, a few months before she had been speaking to a guy who works in the department and he gave her his number, so she gave it a try.  Thankfully this stranger replied, did some wizardry and she was able to apply.  This week she was able to apply for a post in Mera, a small town next to Shell, she is just wating for this to be confirmed on the 22nd of December.  She then starts work on the 1st of January apparently but all this could change and so could the placement if what we have heard of previous applications is to be believed.
Below are Anna-Claires photos from the 2 caravans to the communities, if you went to the Latin Link inspire event you will have already seen them.
These are few of the local delicacies that Anna-Claire was able to sample.
Stewart's Job
As for Stewart his main work for the last month has been helping to put the new roofs on the houses for the families that have relatives staying in the hospital.  This work has been good as it gets him out of the office with the guys and he can practice his Spanish more.  Although with all the slang words he is learning no one will be able to understand his Spanish outside of Ecuador.  You can see some images of teh work below.  He has also finally deciphered the key system and written a new instruction manual in Spanish!!  To finish this off they have to make some changes to some of the doors which they have planned to do in the new year when it is a bit quieter.  This week he has been helping to put in a new Autoclave for sterilisation that was delivered from the US to replace one that was older than the hospital building!  And aside from that he has also been allowed to cut the grass which he loves as he gets to use a ride on lawnmower and pretend he is Colin McCrae!

Stewart has also had his phone stolen so if anyone has been trying to contact him on the UK mobile number and he hasn’t replied it isn’t because he doesn’t like you.  If you need to contact him, use the email address or the Ecuadorian number at the bottom of the email.
Other than all that we had a team meeting here with the Latin Link Ecuadorian team where we had a few days to touch base with everyone and catch up.  We also had our Christmas party this week in work and if you keen to see some silly videos of us check out our Facebook and Instagram posts in the coming week.  We have just arrived at the coast for a Christmas holiday as it turns out with the government job Anna-Claire won’t be permitted holidays for the first 6 months.
Preview of what you will be able to see on social media soon!
A huge Merry Christmas to everyone.
Finally, we want to say a big thanks to all those who receive this email and read it.  For all our pray supporters and financial supporters.  A big thank you to all our support group who have been a superb support listening to us, getting a lovely parcel sent out via Canada, praying and much, much more.  To Stewarts mum, who deserves a massive thanks as she has sacrificed her 60th birthday presents to raise money for a fund that we hope will be set up in the hospital in the new year to help support the medical needs of the most vulnerable patients.  A thanks also to Anna-Claire’s parents who have been able to provide us with some much-needed missionary wisdom.  And finally, to Glenabbey as our sending church and their missions team support as well as Ballylinney and all the support they have provided for us this year.  To all of you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New year.
Prayer Requests
  • Pray that Anna-Claire would get a placement near Shell, but also give thanks for all God has done through prayer so far.
  • That the new fund in the hospital will be set up sooner rather than later and that it will be well planned out before it is initiated.
  • Prayer for the transition of leadership in the new year from Dr Wolff to Doctor Panche who has started working in the hospital full time in the last few weeks.
  • The hospital still badly needs more mission staff so prayer that God would send more mission staff.
We are extremely grateful for all your loving prayers and support.
Please become part of our work
For those of you who are interested in our support group feel free to contact Hannah Das  We meet once a month via zoom for prayer and a catch up.  We love to hear about peoples lives back home so please join us.
Support Link
Please see our contact information below.

Ecuador Tel: +593989899371

UK Tel: +447821224993
Ecuador Tel: +593989890445

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Our mailing address is :
Stewart and Anna-Claire Cusick
Hospital Shell
Calle Asunción Cueva

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Stewart and Anna-Claire Cusick Latin Link · 4 The Folly, · Antrim, Co. Antrim BT41 1LY · United Kingdom

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