Today was our final day at Enaleni. It always seems like it goes so fast! It was another really great day for us connecting with the kids and helping out on a few work projects. Today we finished off with the painting of the playground and putting together the new swings. We also had the privilege of putting a new roof on one of the community homes that had their blown off in a recent storm. It was a day of joy and of goodbyes. We had the opportunity to bless the Make’s and Gogo’s with some gifts including toques and scarfs that were knitted by some ladies from back home especially for them. How fun to see their smiling faces! They got outfitted with new aprons too. We again had the opportunity to hand out each of the care packages and watch the kids eyes get big with wonder and so eager to open them up. A really great final day at Enaleni….from chasing cows off the care point to seeing kids flying high on the new swings. For now I will let our team and the photos tell the rest of the stories of today. Good night from Swaziland! – Jon
It was our last full day in Swaziland. Although there are many thoughts running through my head few can be expressed through words. There are two quick snap shots that come to me from today that touch on the wide range of experiences and emotions that I’ve cherished throughout this trip.
First what comes to mind is some of the children I’ve seen wearing toques in what us Winnipeggers would call hot weather. It occurred to me today, that sometimes these toques are covering sores that result from HIV. Suddenly my heart is broken.
Just minutes later I see again my singing friend from our first day at Enaleni. This time she is leading a choir of pre-schoolers as they sing songs praising God. My eyes well up with tears and I can’t help but let a few spill unto my cheeks. The ominous tones of despair that played in my head as I reflected on a disease that steals parents and kills orphans are overtaken by the songs sung by these little boys and girls full of hope, life, and joy. Suddenly my heart is filled. – Jordan
Greetings from Swaziland! Thank you to all my faithful blog followers. All your comments have been both very meaningful and encouraging to me as well as the cause of much laughter as my fellow team mates liked to place bets on how many blog comments I would receive each night.
Today I said good bye to my precious sponsor child Sebanzile. Her quiet shy smile won my heart the minute I first met her. She hardly said two words to me the entire trip as she doesn’t speak English but her hugs and smiles and giggles were all I needed to fall in love with her. Today at the pre-school presentation I heard her sing and clap and march around the room. I heard her recite the Lord’s prayer in English which was absolutely beautiful. I have enjoyed the time we spent together so very much. I feel so blessed to have been given the opportunity to meet her and share a glimpse of her life in Swaziland. The time I spent with her has been a priceless gift!
As I watched her walk away from the carepoint with her siblings today I smiled and waved with tears running down my face. My life has forever been impacted by this adorable little person in Swaziland. Thank you Sebanzile. I hope to see you again one day. Xoxoxo – Sylvia
Wow what an amazing journey this has been for me. When you see how little it takes to make a child so happy with the biggest smile on their faces whether you hold or cuddle them, push them on the swings, tickle them, kick a soccer ball around with them or just to simply tell them how much they all mean to all of us and how much we love them it really does change you for life. It is so true when I say that my own little munchkin Nomphilo has her finger prints and both of her hands wrapped around and my heart.
Today it just really struck me how much of a typical kid that Nomphilo is. All this week whenever i tried to hangout with her she was so shy, quiet, withdrawn and just not into hanging out with me, but as soon as I put her down or asked her if she wanted to go and play with her friends, she was always gone fast and would brighten up and come to life. I do honestly know how much she truly does love me and the difference that I have made in her hard young life so far. I also love seeing her get to be a child playing alongside of her friends. I leave Africa very sad and broken hearted but also with a lot of hope for this beautiful country that God has called me to come to love and serve. Thanks for everything that you have done for all of us broken team members of Swazi 2014. See or talk to ya all when I get home soon. Love, thoughts and prayers. – Bonnie
Well it was our last at day at Enaleni Care Point. It was great to play games with the older kids and seeing how fast they catch on. Bryan and I went on home visit with Amy today. It was a very big contrast from yesterdays visit. We were at the home of a Prince and there were 29 people living on that homestead with 7 huts. They had cattle and chickens. The Prince said there was 49 people living on that homestead but 20 have died. Amy’s little guy’s parents have passed away but this Prince is his grandfather and they look after him now.
It was very hard to say goodbye to our special friend. She is such a sweetheart and just clung to me most of they day. This has been an amazing journey, I have learned and loved and left it all on the field. So love these people and I will leave another big piece of my heart here again. Thank you everyone for all the support!!! In prayer in blogging and caring. – Cheryl
Today we took one last opportunity make a difference. A group of us went to a homestead to help a young mom who had to put all of her belongings into one room. From what we could gather was that the roof on her other room was blown off by a big wind. We greeted the mom and asked for permission to help her restore the room and take a few pictures. She agreed as long as we refrained from getting her into any pictures.
We did our best to clean the room and replace the termite eaten support beams. Gumwood poles were placed and tied down with wire. Then new steal sheets were nailed down to protect the little room from the sun and rain.
This all sounds so simple but here in Africa everything takes so much longer. Tools go missing or break. Material never arrives together. I believe this is how we learn to “wait upon the Lord”. It forces us to spend time talking and taking time to get to “know” the people we have come to serve.
I covet your prayers as I move on to the next two weeks of my journey. To “go it alone” here will be very different than with a team but I know God is with me and you are behind me. The staff here will be my family and there are new friends to meet. – Thanks again. – Bryan