Richard Westwood and his team of school children and teachers have arrived safely in South Africa. Below are some of their reflections so far from their blog:
Link for Life with Children & Care Volunteers at Siyathuthuka
Making new friends
It's Shannon and Lauren here,had a great experience today meeting the people from Siyathuthuka.We met the care workers that work in the village and got to listen to their stories. we sang for them but they showed us up with one of their worship songs which overwelmed us emotionally. Even though many of the children couldn't speak english they still welcomed us and we couldn't believe how upbeat they were. Two girls plaited our hair and told us their stories and then we were led to 'pray' - we danced and sang in a huge circle. At the end of the visit we saw how many of the kids needed a hug and wanted to stay friends even though we were only there for a short time.
Hi, it is Molly here. I wanted to just express my feelings about a child I was with today at the care point. He was about 5-7 years old and when I went up to him he just wanted a hug. I didn't know the reason why or the situation he was in however I held him for a while and in that time it allowed me to reflect that this boy has nothing and just wants a hug and that was just the right thing for him, he didn't need anything else but time to feel apreciated and it made me realise I don't need all the things in society which surround us but the attention and help of the people I love.
Siyathuthuka home based care is supported by Hands at Work - 75 vulnerable children are cared for and visited in their homes and fed by a dedicated team of 7 remarkable volunteers. They are the heroes today... and tomorrow and the day after... and the day after that...
This is why partnering with Hands at Work is so important... Hands give the support and encouragement and funds which the care volunteers need to be able to keep doing what they do. It is a work of compassion and love for children in real need - and we are all invited to step up and share in the work - here and now and when we get home too.
Many other special moments today from today but they will have to wait until we get home. All of the team have done wonderfully today - everyone who has helped or encouraged them to get here can be really proud of them. Well done everyone - & thank you God for allowing us to be on this journey with the special people we have met today.
Disclaimer- these views and thoughts are those of the team members who have written and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of Hands at Work in Africa or the Link for Life Project.