People & Culture

Dec 3, 2023
Enock Chibende Celebrates Five Years by Taking the Arthrex Flag Home to Zambia

Arthrex, Inc.

Director of Global Compliance Assurance Enock Chibende and his wife, Accounts Payable Manager Patricia Chibende, were both born and raised in Zambia – Patricia in the capital city of Lusaka and Enock in Livingstone, home of Victoria Falls, one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World.

“We would normally think ‘Trip of a Lifetime’ and think about going somewhere new. But I wanted to take the Arthrex flag to Victoria Falls to honor my hometown,” Enock said. “We can use Patricia’s Trip of a Lifetime to go somewhere new and see something we’ve never seen before.”

Prior to the pandemic, Enock’s family traveled home to Zambia every two or three years, almost always incorporating a new place to visit along the way. In keeping with that tradition, Enock, Patricia and their youngest son, Nemo, began their three-week trip in Cape Town, the legislative capital of South Africa.

While in Cape Town, they were joined by Patricia’s sister, who traveled from Monrovia, Liberia, where she currently resides. Together, they tried to visit Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned during apartheid. But by the time they got there, the tours were already full for the day, so instead, they spent time in the museum on the mainland, where the ferries depart from.

“Nelson Mandela is such an iconic figure, it felt significant even being that close,” Enock said.

Arthrex, Inc.

From there, they went to see the colony of penguins that resides at Boulders Beach, near Cape Agulhas, the geographic southern tip of Africa and the dividing point between the Atlantic and Indian Oceans.

And because no trip to Cape Town would be complete without hiking Table Mountain, Enock and his family spent time exploring what was, somewhat recently, named among the New Seven Wonders of Nature in a global poll.

“It was a difficult hike,” Patricia said, “but I never got tired of the views.”

After four busy days in Cape Town, they flew to Lusaka, Zambia. Being in Lusaka allowed Enock to spend time with his mom, all six of his siblings and a myriad of nephews, nieces, grandnephews and grandnieces.

One of the highlights of the trip was renting a van to drive to Livingstone, making random stops at small towns and villages on the Lusaka-Livingstone Road, the main gateway to Zambia’s Southern Province.

In Livingstone, Enock and his family stayed in Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park, where giraffes and zebras roamed freely around the hotel. And, of course, they visited Victoria Falls, taking in the wonder of the roaring water before navigating the rocky trail down the gorge to the Boiling Pot underneath the Victoria Falls Bridge.

“Then we decided to bungee jump off the bridge,” Patricia said.

“Well, I didn’t bungee jump,” Enock clarified. “I’m too risk-averse for that.”

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“There was no stopping me and my son, though,” said Patricia.

Before heading back to Lusaka, they took a sunset cruise on the Zambezi river, a safari in Mosi-oa-Tunya National Park and visited the house where Enock grew up and the primary and secondary schools he attended as a child.

“It felt significant,” he said, “visiting my old stomping grounds with the Arthrex flag in my pocket.”

The road trip back to Lusaka included a stopover in Monze, the village where Patricia’s grandmother grew up. At the village, as they often do during their trips to Zambia, they dropped off donated soccer jerseys and soccer balls.

Leaving Monze, they came across a group of kids who had gathered to play soccer.

“They were all standing around waiting for the kid who was supposed to bring the ball,” Enock explained. “But we’d saved one ball from the things we’d donated, hoping we’d find a street game we could join. My son and I wound up dividing up the kids, each of us coaching a team. That was really special.”

Enock said he was truly thankful to work for such a great company with such amazing benefits.

“Arthrex gave me the opportunity to take the travel flag to my hometown, thousands of miles away,” he said. “It’s a true testament to Making People Better.”

For every five years of employment with Arthrex, employees are eligible for a company-paid Trip of a Lifetime to recognize their dedication. Look for more Trip of a Lifetime highlights on the Arthrex FacebookTwitterInstagram and LinkedIn pages.