Yesterday was our last day with the children. They are so eager to see us each day that they crowd around the entrance to the school, waiting to get a high five as we walk into the schoolyard.
Our leaders had fun projects planned including a closing ceremony with backpacks, t-shirts and school supplies for the children. Some of us painted the girls’ fingernails. We noticed many had half-moon shapes that look like rust-colored dye on their nails. The translators said they use colored dirt to tint them!
The children work many hours when they go home, doing farm labor. Old plastic oil containers are used to haul water. One man was anxious to show us one of their watering holes. We were shocked when we saw it. They desperately need wells.
Their homes are made of adobe. A shallow hole is dug and the earth is mixed with water and hay. They tread on the mixture and then throw it onto a wooden framework. Most of the wood they use is from the fast growing eucalyptus trees. A thatched roof or corrugated metal roof completes the dwelling.
As we drove home one day, we slowed as we passed some women walking home from the market. They grasped our hands through the windows, thanking us for what we’re doing for the children. It’s heartwarming and overwhelming. Satisfying to give but there are so many needs.
Every little bit helps! If you’d like to make a donation to Engage Now Africa, you can be sure your money is well-spent.