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Update 12: 25/07/15 - The Team are back!

The team have all safely returned from Rwanda, although the same can’t yet be said for all our luggage. Everyone’s in agreement that it was a fantastic trip and a brilliant group that worked really well together to complete a great bridge that will really make a difference to the communities in Gaseke and the surrounding area.

The bridge build went well and we worked effectively with the local workers, helping them to learn some new skills whilst learning lots ourselves. The daily routine was hard work, rising at 6am and working through to sunset 12 hours later in strong sun and much hotter temperatures than most of us were used to. We completed the bridge a day ahead of the original program in time for the revised inauguration time of Monday afternoon. The inauguration was a spectacular event with hundreds of locals, music, dancing, some Rwandan beers and meat from three goats we’d bought and grazed on our site.

The team bonded very well throughout the trip, spirits remained high and everyone enjoyed the experience. The health and safety on the project went smoothly and I think our attitude and approach to it throughout the project is one of the most valuable elements that we passed onto the locals. There were no injuries other than the odd splinter and no major illnesses other than a brief stomach bug, a few colds and some suspected heat exhaustion.

This is only a brief update that I’m putting together on the flight back to London, expect many more details, pictures and videos in the coming weeks. I’ve got over 150GB of photos and videos to sort through and edit so don’t expect too much immediately!

Do get in touch via if you would like to hear more about anything specific or are interested in helping us share the story of the project.

Below there’s a couple more photos to whet your appetite for what’s to come.
Thanks for reading,

Above: Tommy gives the first morning briefing

Above: Erecting the first scaffold tower

Above: Pulling the cables

Above: The hangers ready for decking

Above: Laying the decking

Above: Nearly there!

Above: Kev sorting the banner for the inauguration

Above: Dave and Clare mingle with the locals on the bridge

Above: Everyone listens to the inauguration speeches

Update 11: 21/07/15 - The Bridge is Complete!

Just a very quick update today to say that the bridge is complete and the team are all safely back in Kigali! We will post some longer and more detailed updates in the coming days once we get better internet than our hostel in Kigali!

Update 10: 08/07/15 - Ready To Go!

It's now less than 24hrs until we depart and I think it's safe to say we're all pretty excited! Last night the majority of the team attended the B2P UK Charitable Trust Launch. The event was launching B2P as a UK registered charity and it was great to meet some of the faces we've been chatting to over the past few months. We answered a few questions posed by Ian Firth and spent some time mingling with others at the event, which only served to stoke our enthusiasm. 

We've been putting the final touches to our plan, ensuring we've got all our drawings and information printed and laminated, and carefully counting kilos and hoping we manage to get all our kit safely to Rwanda. 

We're due to land in Kigali at around 1am Friday morning, from there we'll head to a hostel in the captial for our first night. After a bit of sleep we'll be meeting Brooke and the rest of the B2P Rwanda team and collecting our vehicles. Once we've done a bit of shopping in Kigali for some food, sim cards and whatever we've forgotten we'll head to Gaseke for some lunch and to check out the bridge site. Construction will start in ernest on Saturday morning, all being well! 

It's unlikely we're going to have much in the way of internet connection for the first week we're out there, so don't expect more updates for a while! We're hopeful we might be able to get the odd tweet out, and possibly a brief update on Sunday 18th July. However, don't expect much, once we land in Rwanda we'll inevitably have a load to deal with and priority number 1 will have to be getting the bridge built and teaching as many skills to the local workers as possible! 

Update 9: 25/06/15 - Foundations work has Begun!

In order for us to be able to complete the bridge during the short two week construction schedule work on the foundations has already begun. The Bridges to Prosperity in country team and some of the local workers have nearly completed all of the foundations and ramps already, this means the concrete will be cured and ready to build on once we arrive.

Update 8: 10/06/15 - Construction / Health & Safety Call

Today the team had a very successfull call with Bridges to Prosperity in America. We discussed the construction and health and safety plans. This was a great opportunity to call on the experience of Bridges to Prosperity and take advice from people who have seen many similar projects completed successfully. After the call the team discussed some of the finer details of our planning and logistics.

The team speaking to Bridges to Prosperity via video link from the Flint & Neill offices in London.

Update 7: 04/06/15 - Table Football Tournament

Tonight the Flint & Neill members of the team hosted the finals of the table football tournament they'd organised to raise money for the project. Flint & Neill were kind enough to let us combine the event with staff social drinks and provided all the food and drink for the event.
The evening was great fun and credit must be given to Amie, Flint & Neill Office Manager, for doing so much to make the event a success and a massive thanks to Antonio for organising the table football side of things!
Check out the short video edit Johannes made of the event below:

Update 6: 28/05/15 - Regents Park 10km

The team have completed their 10km run around Regents Park! The majority of the Gaseke team and a couple of additional supporters from Flint Neill met at The Hub in Regents Park in ideal running conditions. The course was three circiuts of a relatively flat loop of 3.3km around the park.
Ollie, a Flint Neill engineer who isn't on the Gaseke project, made it look easy: he took 8th place overall after completing the distance in an impressive 38mins 04seconds. Ben Curry (Logistics Coordinator) also made light work of the course getting round in 41mins 46seconds, 23rd place overall. The rest of the team weren't too far behind and everyone got round the course without any injuries or dramas.
A special mention must go to Miriam Alonso (Project Manager), her five weeks of training evidently paid off! For at least half of us it was our first ever organised 10km running event and fun was had by all. Thanks very much to everyone who came along to support and everyone who donated specifically for the run!

The team before...

...and after completing the 10k

Update 5: 22/05/15 - David's Cycle Report

For the last three days I've been steadily making my way around the M25 by bike on minor roads to encourage others on the M25 DBFO I work with to join me in raising money for the Gaseke project. We're still totting up what we've raised but it was an excellent three days and enjoyed by all!

Day 1 Dartford to Leatherhead via Swanley (75km)

We set off in glorious sunshine and for the majority of the day it remained so, loving the undulating hills of Kent and into Surrey. With 25km remaining however the clouds descended and we eventually made it to Leatherhead very cold and very wet! Thankfully we were greeted with tea, coffee and cakes at our depot there and soon perked up!

Day 2 Leatherhead to Scratchwood via Denham (92km)

For the second day I was joined by a fellow triathlete for the morning which flew by in record time and again in lovely sunshine with just the occasional shower. For the afternoon leg I was anticipating a much gentler pace however my colleague absolutely smashed it, once again finishing with cakes provided at the Scratchwood office.

Day 3 Scratchwood to Dartford via South Mimms and Blunts Farm (82.6km)

The weather really settled down for the final day with not a single drop of rain to interrupt the sun streaming down. After a liberal dousing of suncream we headed off and I was once again amazed by the speed of my colleague, struggling to keep up whilst trying to navigate with a phone in one hand. Thankfully again the kilometers zipped by with no mechanical issues and around 2pm I pulled into Essex Point just north of the QEII bridge to complete the journey.

It was a great three days with the bonus of raising money for this excellent cause. One day on and the legs are a little tired, the saddle region is somewhat tender however it was all worth it to contribute towards the succes of our project in July!

Huge thanks to everyone who took part, either on the cycle or helping to organise!

Update 4: 14/05/15 - Presentation to Flint Neill

The Gaseke B2P team members from Flint Neill gave a lunchtime presentation to the whole company today. We outlined what Bridges to Prosperity do before explaining why Gaseke was selected as a suitable site, and what the impact on the communities will be. We also covered how the bridge will be built and launched some of our internal fundraising activites. We'll be cooking and selling lunches every Friday between now and when we depart for Rwanda and have a table football tournament organised.

Project Manager Miriam Alonso presenting to the London office with the other offices watching via video link.

Update 3: 16/04/15 - Social Media Launch

We've launched our social media pages! Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

Update 2: 17/03/15 - Launch Call

We had a great kick-off meeting today with Bridges to Prosperity. We chatted to the teams both in Rwanda and the US. Ian Firth was fresh from a visit to a B2P build in Nicaragua and gave us some great advice. After the meeting the team relaxed a bit more in the Flint Neill offices...

Update 1: 16/03/15 - Website Created

Work on the website begins!


Bridges to Prosperity

Bridges to Prosperity envisions a world where poverty caused by rural isolation no longer exists. Our programs provide access to healthcare, education and markets by teaching communities how to build footbridges over impassable rivers, in partnership with organizations and professionals. We prove the value of our work through a commitment to the community and its bridge that lasts long after the opening celebration.