I do need to post about our summer and what we’ve been doing but that’s going to have to wait! I wanted to get this message out about a project I’m working on! I’m really excited and super passionate about it and I hope you will be too!
My parents are serving a mission in South Africa. One of the many things they do; aside from their regular welfare missionary classes and work, is volunteer at a local orphanage. It’s in a city called Tembisa.
In 1989, 65 year old Regina Sekgobela, opened a small day care for the children of Tembisa. The main reason for her kindness was to look after children when they finished school. As time passed, parents who dropped their children off, would not return to take their children home. Leaving them in Regina’s care. Word spread through the township and more and more children were getting left behind.
Today, “Mama” takes in all who enter through her doors. It doesn’t matter if the children come from foster care, are homeless, left by their parents, or dropped off by the police, Mama welcomes them with loving arms.
This orphanage does not recieve any help or funding from government. A local school gives them extra food. Some high school students volunteer their time to help Mama with the kids and work in a small garden. Mama sells some vegetables for money so she can buy goods for the orphanage. A local LDS ward also helps with necessities when needed.
The Bulamahlo orphanage consists of three trailers. They are about 40 feet long and 15 feet wide. The trailers are used for sleeping, cooking, laundry, bathroom, and playing.
Mama takes the elementary age kids to school each day in her truck and picks them up after school. The younger children stay back and play. Currently, are about 15 – 20 kids at the orphanage. There has been up to 50 plus.
The biggest stress for Mama now is making sure the children have food. They eat two meals a day. The meals are usually “pap” which is like oatmeal, hamburger buns with aa little jam, or fish pieces in tomato sauce. (delicious, I know) They don’t have treats or any sweets. It’s rare to have fruit and/or vegetables.
A handful of these kids are infected by the HIV virus. Most of their parents are infected and have passed it to on to their kids. These children have no one to look after them, no place to call home, and no one but Mama to look up to.
I know I can’t change the future for these children but I do know I can make a small difference in their lives by providing them with something small and simple. Things we take for granted are things that could brighten their day.
I have created a Facebook Page which I’ll post photos, videos, and updates of this journey.
I’ve had a lot of people ask if they can make hygiene kits, make quilts, or things I can take with me. Honestly, the easiest and best way to help is to donate money. From $5.00 – $20.00 would be plenty. When I get to South Africa, we will go buy the things they need. I don’t have room to take things over with me. All donations go straight the orphanage. I’m not using any of this money for personal use.
Another neat thing I’m doing is documenting everything. Pictures, videos, and message so everyone can see the process. I’m really excited to show the orphanage, kids, and Mama. It would definitely be more meaningful to those who donate to see the lives they are blessing!