Sunday, March 20, 2011
Sunday, March 6, 2011
32 kids are a whole lot more joy than 16, but also a whole lot more interesting, adventurous and hard work.
14 children arrived last weekend and then one on Monday and another on Wednesday. Since then there have been times of outfitting them all with new clothes and shoes, trips to medical clinics for treatment and then all of them for testing, enrollment at the local schools (we have one secondary student) and preschool, and lots of time just getting to know them and watching all of the mischief they get up to. Some are learning rapidly the ‘rules’ whilst others it is going to take longer for. Without exception, they are all excited to be in the village and part of a new family.
The houses are gradually being set up - the new cooking stove is finally ready for use and tables and benches have been made to make the dining experience possible in two separate groups. Tomorrow we should get the solar lights up and running - very important since we are still without power after more than 2 weeks. When the lights finally come on I’m sure the new children will be quite surprised.
The integration of the old and the new kids has been amazing. After the initial infatuation and treating the smallest kids as toys has worn off, new friendships have been made and there has been no indication of any disharmony between the two groups. The experienced kids are very helpful in explaining things and helping their new friends.
It has been a bit of a shock for the two mothers, Rose and Persis. They are coming to terms with the work involved in caring for 8 kids, but with the support of the other mothers, Agnes and Loyce, they are getting on top of it.
Some things that have been highlights of the week:
- The smile on Maliko’s face on Monday when Ivan, Luke and I collected him from the Kikaramojo slum. Mailko is the boy who we couldn’t get on Saturday because of the recent death of his mother. He has been amazing all week and is so enjoying the comfort of the village.
- The sight of children playing on the swings - a simple little thing but probably the first time for most of them.
- One new girl sharing her new clothes with another who we hadn’t been able to get enough dresses for.
- The way that all of the kids have participated in the nightly devotions and singing.
- The kids discovering that they don’t have to hide away some extra food in case the next meal doesn’t come.
If you are not yet a sponsor of the village, please consider it. There are sponsorships available for the two new houses. Check out www.hopebuilders.org.au