Well…monday marked our last day at Bhobhokazi. It was again a full and significant day together. Our hearts have had so much impact and each day we wonder where there will be room for more and yet there is. We have experienced so much.
Yesterday was full of experiences again….in the morning we had a chance to quickly visit the local market in Manzini and do another version of speed shopping as we had only a short time there. Many frantic shoppers came back with their arms full their personal african art and jewelry collections.
After lunch 5 of our team headed to the hospital for a visit there. They were quite excited for the experience being that 3 of them were nurses. They had a good visit, but were a little disappointed because they weren’t allowed to go into too many of the wards. The problem was that they were asked what they did for a living and when they said nurses, it kinda triggered the fact that they didn’t necessarily want to show Canadian nurses what their hospital wards were truly like. I guess they felt embarassed and wanted to hide those things from them and only show their best sides. When the nurses asked where the abandoned baby ward was, they were told there wasn’t one….but in all reality Jumbo said he was there last week. Nonetheless they had a meaningful time connecting with the hospital administration and giving them some medical supplies that they had brought.
The remainder of us headed back to Bhobhokazi for one last afternoon. We weren’t sure how our experience was going to be leaving there as we have had a great time connecting but only for just a short time. We had the privilege of playing with the kids….sharing the Easter story and getting them to make cross necklaces out of beads and wood crosses. It was great.
We had to make a decision to not hand out the crocks (shoes) that we had brought because we didn’t have enough bigger sizes for the older ones. Kriek said that she will make sure she picks up enough large sizes and that the shoes will be handed out to them soon.
Then we had the joy of handing out the care packages! It was so great. The joy on the faces of each of the children that received one was inspiring and moving. We tried to grab pictures of each of them as it happened. There were a few difficult moments for the team as well, because we had to witness some things that didn’t make as much sense to us in our western mindset but that make total sense for the structure that is in place for the children. Not all of the kids that were there got a care package….in fact, some of the sponsor children we have weren’t able to get their’s given to them right then. Basically if the children haven’t been attending their discipleship team meetings, they aren’t able to receive their gift. They WILL receive their gifts however….but they need to attend the carepoint discipleship for 3 weeks first. They also said they will take a picture for us of those children when they receive those gifts. We were able to hand out about 70 percent of the Bhobhokazi packages as some of the children weren’t there that day for whatever reason. We need to remember a few things…..life in Africa is SO different….and they don’t have the structure that we do…..secondly….many of these children don’t have parents….and Jumbo and Kriek make these decisions in order to help build boundaries and structure into their lives. The best way we understood it was to compare Enaleni….a developed carepoint….to Bhobhokazi….which has been the neglected carepoint….
As they implement their structures with these kids….they will see it develop into the type of carepoint that Enaleni is…..anyway….we were moved as Jumbo shared his heart for these kids to learn good boundaries….to grow up learning about God…and we KNOW that Jumbo and Kriek love them all to bits and know what is best for them!
Anyway…it truly was FUN to see the smiles on the children that received a care package. Just amazing.
Last night when we were sharing about leaving the Bhobhokazi for the final time….people used the following descriptions…..heart-broken….emotional….sad….and many were moved to tears….
Anyway…a quick update…we miss you all…I gotta run because I don’t want to be the last one one the bus that is supposed to leave in 5 minutes and I still have to eat breakfast. We are off to our last day at Enaleni….this will be a hard one.