Well, if you haven’t heard already, I’m in South Africa for two weeks! I’m finally here and super stoked.
Today was our first full day here. After an 18-hour plane ride, you are more than happy to walk around and not feel like a cramped zombie.
We are staying at African Leadership Academy (ALA), girls in the dorms and men in the opposite side of the dorm housing. This school is made of only the best students from around Africa. Th atmosphere is amazing and the students are so polite. No weird food, and the weather here is gorgeous! They’re just starting summer and are in the short rainy season currently so it’ll rain at night and before we head out to the camps in the morning but clears up quickly by noon and although windy, very comfortable in jeans and a t-shirt.
After breakfast this morning we drove to Impact Africa’s offices and discussed the mission for this trip. After we met all the interns we drove over to the children center Impact Kids has set up next to one of the squatter (homeless) camps, in a township called Kya Sands. We ate lunch with the kids and took an hour or two to play and spend time with them. They were fascinated with my camera so I let them look through the viewfinder and snap away. Love looking at things through other’s perspectives.
Next we went directly to Kya Sands, for a discipleship group in one of the shacks. There are little “shops” set up as you walk through, the interns show us the water pumps where everyone goes to collect water for baths, drinking, and washing. Trash litters the streets and glass is constantly under your feet. No one seems to mind, walking around barefoot. The children run up to you shouting, “sharp!” (pronounced shop) as a handshake or child-like greeting. They all play and wander around the community, mothers collectively watching out for the children, even if they’re not their own. Most of them have cell-phones even though they live in dilapidated shacks. Imports like BMW, Ferrari, Lamborghinis are cheaper here and Ford, Chevy, Toyota cost more and are considered high end because they are imported.
After an amazing time at discipleship we head over to a lady, Tu-Tu’s, shack. Word is she recently had a stroke, we arrive and find out she’s all by herself with no one to take care of her. Her left side is in a lot of pain and she has a hard time walking. She doesn’t have anyone to bring her water or a job to supply herself with a job. She wonders why God would make her and then she could be in this much pain. She says she wishes God would just take her. Tu-Tu tells us the people gossip about her and only come in her shack to see if she is dead yet. She hopes a lady who is just an acquaintance with her, Promise, will help her. She also tells us her father worries about her and she wants to go back home to Zimbabwe so she can die there. Hoping to give her hope, I tell her the story of Job. Telling her how Job lost everything and all his friends turned their backs against him, gossiping about him. I told her about of his unbreakable trust and faith in God and in the end God rewarded him with double what he originally had. “God will be your friend, you’re never alone. If you trust Him you won’t have to worry, He’ll take care of you.” After we pray for her she walks us out the door (she couldn’t stand before we left) and asks us to come back again tomorrow.
So excited with all that God is doing! Can’t wait to update you more!