A Full, Full Day - Monday Oct 7, 2019
Today our blog comes in the form of short stories from some of our mission participants. Read away and enjoy!
A word from Cathy Radul...
The day started with the most wonderful greeting from the students at Nelson Mandela Secondary School.
After, introductions and much laughter, Aaron, Marie and I headed to the kindergarten area to serve a meal of porridge which was cooked over an open fire outside the classroom. The students lined up with plastic cups, plates, lids, and containers of all shapes and sizes. When we finished filling the cups, we waited for some to finish so others who didn’t get a cup could use their container. We headed inside to help plaster a wall in a primary classroom in preparation for painting. When I asked if I should start on the next wall, I was told no, they only had paint for the one wall!
After cleaning up, we headed back to the fires to help serve the older students a luncheon of maize and corn. Two large cauldrons were carried by the cooks, using a few sheets of paper as potholders, and set on the ground. I pulled up a three legged wooden stool and proceeded to dish out the lunch.
The kids were so good and appreciative and sat on the ground by the school to eat. The hardest moment for me was when I realized I was at the bottom of the second pot and I still had students coming forward. Luckily, only one student got very little but managed to share with another. We left exhausted and again more appreciative of our lives back home. How can we help MORE??
A word from Eileen McInnis...
We had the privilege of delivering letters from Canada to some students at Nelson Mandala Secondary School. They are paired with Canadian students in the Chalice school-to-school program.
“Our” students here took the task of replying very seriously! They are eager to make a good impression on the Canadian kids. Their sincere appreciation is typical of the respect we’ve been shown everywhere this week.
And what a thrill to be in the room when students and teachers harvested their first batch of honey. They received the hives from Chalice’s school farming program and they hang them high in the trees behind the school.
They even have their own labels! They will sell the honey at market and re-invest the funds. This is the exciting beginning of something sweet.
A word from Emily Sullivan...
I’m here planting fruit saplings and vegetables with 13 year old students in the food garden.
Many of the planting techniques used by their forefathers have been lost so students are relearning these skills and knowledge to bring them back to their parents. I’m shocked by the manual process. The school has a couple of shovels, a hoe and a machette used for digging.
Manure is taken from the fields in plastic buckets and carried to the garden where it is mixed by hand to the soil. Food for thought....