Closure might be a good thing in bad relationships.  But it is much less so when you are trying to start-up.

So we are really sad. We have had to shut our Mozambican Headquarters (HQ)!  We just do not have the funds to continue it.  The recession forced a major match funding donor to concentrate funds elsewhere.  So – the closure of the office was forced upon us.

HQ Closure – a real shame

Mark Mitchell had been in our team for the response to Cyclone Favia on the Zambezi in 2007.

And we had a good run at start-up.  We were just getting ourselves settled into the community in Maputo.  

Also the Mitchell family was settling into their schools and their rental housing.  The visas and all the other support things that make living abroad easier were starting to be resolved.  And their Portuguese language training was underway.

And those were just the support issues.  

Links were being built into aid agencies on the ground in the capital.  We were also building our understanding of the helicopter support infrastructure in the country.  All these links make disaster response quicker.

Still, we had to close the HQ.  But we learnt so many things from having our first staff abroad.   And we thank Mark and Julia Mitchell and their family for their time with us.

Closure – going off staff

Good ground crew - Mark Mitchell  closure
Our first Country Director – Mark Mitchell

As a result and with deep regret, Mark Mitchell went off staff at the end of October 2008, and we send him, Julia and their family, every good wish for the future.