Today. Wow. So much has gone on today. We started with Holiday Club. We had probably close to 200 different faces there. Some new some old. All were glad for the opportunity to have fun, to receive a meal, and to be lavished on with affection. So many are starved for affection. It breaks your heart.
I know personally today was awesome but quite different. It was wonderful being able to minister to the kids and to the teenagers. However, don't get me wrong, they ministered to us just as must as we ministered to them. The organization called Mocha club has a shirt that says "I need africa more than africa needs me." This is so true. They have a joy that we do not know. They lack material things but they are still smiling. What is it? The American Dream says we need money and things to be happy. This is not the Ocean View dream or the dream of any other township. Their dream is to survive, to not be another number, to have joy in the midst of poverty. There are many lessons we can learn from them.
We went walking through Ocean View this morning doing what we call a "call out." It is where we walk around calling to the kids to come to the center and telling them about it. We split up and went through the majority of the community. This was really eye-opening. I walked through it with about five others, and I was the only one not from the commmunity. It was as if I was a fly on the wall watching them interact with their fellow community members. I got to see the township first hand. To see what it is like in the morning hours.
I can not write this without telling about what happened to me during kids club. There was a little girl who was upset during crafttime. I knelt down to see what was wrong and she said (in English with a very thick Afrikaans accent) that she didn't feel good. Once I finally understood what she was trying so hard to tell me I picked her up. About two seconds later she got sick. The next thing I realize is not only is there stuff in the floor but it is also on my back. The irony is I actually had on my scrubs today because today's theme was "Everyday Heroes." I took her to the bathroom before she got sick again. After cleaning up, she walked out to go home before I could tell her it was ok. I really hope she was not really embarrassed thinking I will have something against her. One thing that was different was the fact that she totally walked home by herself and she was no older than 2nd grade. Back home, we will be questioned if we let a child that young walk home by themselves, especially in that type of environment. However, that might be difference of culture and difference of parental avaliability. I really hope and pray she is feeling better and got home safely. She told me that she had not eaten anything yet.
We have found out that it is highly possible that the meal fed to the children and to the teens is the only time they eat during the day. What can we do? How can we help? How can we join on to what God is already doing here and around to the world? He is already working through so many organizations to feed His children. This is true even if has humans it is only one mouth meal at a time. Any difference however small it might be is a very big different to them.