Will keep you updated on how the program is running.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Will keep you updated on how the program is running.
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Meet all our teachers. From left to right Tito Mabuleza (pre-school and Grade 1), Joao Feniassi (Grade 4 and Head Master), Joao Benjamin (University Graduate - volunteer), Simbulani Paradzai (Grade 3 - new teacher) and Paulo Inacio (Grade 2 and 5).
Government does not pay the salaries of these teacher so the mission are standing in for their salaries.I couldn't resist this photo - one of our new students for the year. Dressed to kill in his own stylish suit. Our 2010 intake for our bush school passed the 240 mark as we speak.
MOZAMBICAN DROUGHT DRIES UP FOOD LIFELINE2010 Started without any rain anywhere. It is dry. As you know all rural people in Africa depend on their local crops to survive for the rest of the year. Mozambique is no exception and maize is the most basic food for the local people. Where January usually measures up to 300mm of rain we have only had about 20 mm. Maize already dried up and still no prospect for any rain. Please pray with us as people are already suffering ..... and again it is the old people and the babies that suffers first. It is a dire situation ..... where even us can only look and pray.
Now that is one of the many things I love about kids. You can never dampen their joyous spirit. Some of our school boys were absolutely overjoyed with life despite the situation.
Saturday, January 16, 2010
And that is how it works in Mozambique. The one day you are in Johannesburg about 1 500 km away from Mozambique and the next day you plan to rush back out of breath. Mozambique has an interesting way when it comes to sharing news. THE RADIO. Like elsewhere in Africa the radio plays a major role. We don't always have year planners or other ways to organize our year - when the radio speaks ...... we all run. Sometimes like chickens running away from the dreadful axe ..... nevertheless ..... we run. Interestingly the radio news has never changed! It sounds something like ....... drums playing on the hour and then the deep voice of a Mozambican calls out ..... "Antenna Nacional .... RM" The RM I figured out stands for Radio Mozambique.
Photo: Second round of training for our teachers in a more relaxed atmosphere. The teacher unions in South Africa would be proud!!!
Well ..... to cut a long story short .... had a week to prepare teachers for the new year. Run through training, set up year rosters, hire a new teacher, buy stationary and do some more training.
Photo: In Mozambique we don't have to plead for parents to attend school opening. They come on short notice ...... and sometimes the bush mail is faster than satellite mail!
Our schools did us proud though in 2009. We have had an overall pass rate of 85 % of which our grade 5 students who had to write an external exam fared the best of all our schools in the area with a pass rate of 90,5 %. WOW ..... that is even better than the South African results with a few hundred million to support them!
Photo: Francois - a serious moment pondering on some questions from parents in the community.
So Monday back to school (short notice and all) and even our pre-schools are ready to start the year with a bang. WE are always short on Portuguese story books. We are currently in the process of starting our own library. If you have any Portuguese books laying around - please let me know - we will pick them up from wherever in the world!
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Photo: Ok .... a bit over the top .... but you get the idea!
Photo: The real pothole in Zimbabwe.
Anyway it's late on the road and all the locals keep on reminding me not to drive at night. The roads are dangerous they said. Well I thought of pushing along anyway. The vehicle wrecks with burnt-out trucks along the roadside was a reminder of people who did not listen to the locals. The potholes didn't help either. I was swerving from the one side to the other to just hit another.
Photo: The Lion and Elephant Hotel in its glory. Photos from their postcards.
Friday, January 01, 2010
I hope and pray that you too will not just accept the fact that ..... "that's just the way it is!" Wherever you are and whatever influence you have in this life let us make 2010 count. Spiritually, financially and in every other aspect of your life. It is so easy to just sit and say .... "my fears won't allow me to move forward", or ....... "I don't have the ability ...." and so we can go on. May God help us to change situations for the good of the Kingdom. People are depending on you!
A friend in Burundi wrote the following and said if we don't stand up and act NOW we'll end up echoing these sad words:
To sinful patterns of behaviour that never get confronted and changed,
Abilities and gifts that never get cultivated and deployed –
Until weeks become months
And months turn into years,
And one day you’re looking back on a life of
Deep intimate gut-wrenchingly honest conversations you never had;
Great bold prayers you never prayed,
Exhilarating risks you never took,
Sacrificial gifts you never offered
Lives you never touched,
And you’re sitting in a recliner with a shrivelled soul.
And forgotten dreams,
And you realise there was a world of desperate need,
And a great God calling you to be part of something bigger than yourself –
You see the person you could have become but did not;
You never followed your calling.
You never got out of the boat.