Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Catch Up #2- Seventh Feeding Point – 1/06/11 (written June 2 ’11)

Today was my last day with the children in Musana. My sister and I are flying out of Africa exactly a week from today, and won’t be seeing them again. It’s strange how children can get under your skin- one week I didn’t know any of them, the next I didn’t want to imagine never seeing them again. It’ll be hard not knowing if they’re alright, not knowing what’s happening with their situations.

This week my mom and I went walking around Musana for a couple of hours. It was boiling hot, with barely any wind, but it was absolutely beautiful. This is such a gorgeous country, with such wonderful people, and I’m so glad that I was able to be a part of this new beginning. I’m so excited to hear more about what will happen with the ministry, and see what God has in store for all of these children!

At the end of the day, when we were about to leave, they got all the children into a group, and taught them to say “Bye-bye Erin, bye-bye Megan, we’re going to miss you”. It was so sweet… and I’m definitely going to miss them.

Catch Up #1- Elephants and Waterfalls (written May 30 ’11)

This weekend [a week or so before Megan and I left Africa] was absolutely amazing. We left our house on Sunday morning, and arrived in the town of Victoria Falls ten hours later, exhausted, but excited.

The next morning we went to see Victoria Falls, which is one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Words can’t even describe how incredibly breathtaking those falls are. It is literally unending waterfalls, water pounding down unstoppably, with an insane amount of spray… we were all drenched by the end of it! Thankfully, the rest of our family has been there before, and we were prepared this time- we bought the “touristy” ponchos, and they saved most of our clothes from harm. I also wrapped my camera in cellophane, which saved it from any water damage.

I literally can’t describe how amazing it was, so I’ll let the pictures describe it for me.

After the waterfalls, Megan, our mom, and I went… and rode elephants! The elephants were so steady and gentle, it was actually very comfortable. Elephants are the second most intelligent animals in the world (after dolphins, my favourite) and it was so obvious; those elephants understand spoken commands in English, Shona, and Ndebele (two other languages in Zimbabwe, other than English), and answer to their own names. It was so surreal, I kept on thinking to myself, You’re riding an elephant in Africa!

It was one of the most amazing experiences I’ve ever had- right up there with riding camels around the pyramids!

Our elephant (my sister and I had to share a ride) was named Lundi, and she’s pregnant, and will give birth any day now. She was very sweet; after our hour long ride, we got to feed her, and sit on her ‘lap’. They’re very demanding about getting treats, sticking their long trunks right in your face if you’re not quick enough about it.

Again, a picture is worth a thousand words, so here are a few thousand more words…

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

So Far Behind...

... It isn't even funny. 

I can't believe that I haven't posted in nearly two months!

It's been crazy- Megan and I left Africa on June 8th, and flew out to England, where we spent two weeks before flying back to Vancouver- and we've been home ever since! 

I will post about the feeding programs, about how the fam is doing in Zim, about our trip in London and Congleton (and our Glee live concert experience!), and about how our lives are going back here in Canada later... 

For now I just wanted to say hi, and let everyone know that I am not dead. 

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Sixth Feeding Point – 25/05/11

There has been a bit of a problem concerning which kids are being accepted into the program, and which are not- parents are complaining, and the village head has given us a new list of kids, some of whom are obviously doing fine. It’s been a bit crazy, and although the village head and other people in the village are being helpful, some people are just causing unnecessary problems.

So we have decided to go around to every child’s house and do a thorough assessment of their situation, and go from there. Today we did the first group of visits, and it was very interesting to see what is really going on, as opposed to what the child has told us. A few of them quite definitely do not need to be in the program, and some of them definitely do.

It will take a long time to finish up all the assessments, but hopefully once we are done, we will have a definite list of the kids who are in the program, no matter what. Pray for us, as we try to sort all of this out!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Fourth Feeding Point- 11/05/11

We now have 105 of the neediest/poorest children registered with us, with more to come next week! It is so exciting to see the ministry growing even just in these past couple of weeks. At the moment we are trying to get more information about the children, and are in the process of creating a website, so more news on that to come. Here are a few pictures from the most recent feeding program (next one happening tomorrow).

Belinda, our 100th child registered!

I don’t have details to tell many of the children’s stories yet, but here is one. We met Michelle (12), O’Brian (10) and Moesha (5) last week when they showed up quite late in the afternoon and asked if they could have food. They were dressed in very ragged and dirty clothes, and looked like they came from a very poor situation, even for Musana. When we asked them where they had come from, they indicated that they live in a village quite a distance from our property. Someone had told them about our program, and they had spent much of the afternoon walking to get there. They noted that they are orphans who live with their grandmother, and only get one small meal per day, as she is very poor. While these children are technically outside the area we said we were going to serve, we simply could not turn them away after hearing their story, so they are part of our program now. While they were very reserved at first, Michelle, O’Brian and Moesha have warmed up and now fully participate in the games and activities.

Please pray for us and the children as we continue to expand the ministry, and develop relationships with each other.