Overall, this week has been incredible, motivating, and rewarding. We had the pleasure of being able to do ice breakers meeting the staff of Afrika Tikkun, home and clinic visits, playing games with the children, cutting food and helping cook, and painting the office. We also had the pleasure of being able to eat in the township and visit other townships along the way. Being able to see how others live and what is inspirational to them. It was the most humbling and inspiriting week I have been able to experience. The staff at Afrika Tikkun were so grateful and have taught me a lot throughout the whole time spent there.
Recently in Nicole Bell Category
Today was an inspiring day. I first arrived to Delft Township with the intention of seeing and playing with the children during the day. However, that was not what occurred; something way better happened. Six others and myself created a drawing and painted it onto the wall of the building. The painting consisted of a tree that had branches coming out of it across the wall with words such as inspiring, courage, determination, and inspiration along the branches. Within the main branch it read Afrika Tikkun in huge letters for all to see. The logo of Afrika Tikkun was painted on the last panel of the wall. It turned out so beautiful and the staff of Afrika Tikkun were so gracious and thankful. They gave us all huge hugs and made us feel absolutely incredible. It is so great to know that they love what we did and it will be there forever for all the children, staff, and they rest of the visitors to Afrika Tikkun will see.
After reading the articles To Hell with Good Intentions by Ivan Illich and Oprah's Good Intentions by Rev. Irene Monroe many things have crossed my mind. What are we doing here? And are we even welcomed in these townships? Reading these articles really got me to think that I do not want to be one of those Americans that come to Third World Countries and thinks they can fix everything when in reality they are fixing what they want fixed not what the people want fixed or need. I think these articles stress the importance of 'coming in right'. You want to make sure you are addressing the people's needs and wants because how are you suppose to know what is right for them when you are not living in their communities on a daily basis. Two quotes that stood out to me from the articles are: "Because how we give matters as much as what we give" and "the road to hell is paved with good intentions". These quotes stood out to me because even though we have good intentions and are trying to help we may not be helping in the correct way or what really needs help and we may be creating even more problems. I think these would be great articles to read because going on mission trips or any type of trip that is going to Third World Countries to help others. These articles really make you question what you are doing and what are your intentions. It also shows you that most likely the people will not want you help because you are not actually helping them you are doing what you want to fix and helping yourself. However, if you come in right and allow them to show you what they need help with they will be accepting and you will hopefully be able to make a difference. I mean in reality that is why people do these types of things: to make a difference.
This whole week has been packed with a lot of fun. Tuesday we went to the Bafana Bafana vs. Norway game. It was an amazing experience interacting with all of the locals, watching the game, and coming together as one cheering for Bafana Bafana. Then yesterday ten of us went on the Aquila Safari where we were able to see elephants, rhinos, springboks, giraffes, zebras, lions, cheetahs, and crocodiles. We had to wake up early and leave our house by 7 am where Lisa and another lady who were a bundle of energy greeted us. On the way to the safari we saw baboons on the side of the road. Once we got to the reserve we were greeted by the staff and had an amazing breakfast. The safari was about two and a half hours long and afterwards we had lunch and then were able to lie out by the pool. It was a great way to spend our free day on Saturday. Finally, today we went to Simon's Town where we were able to see penguins and swim in the ocean. Milan and myself were jumping off the rocks into the ocean with some of the locals. It was a blast! Afterwards, we went to Cape Point and Cape of Good Hope where we hiked up the mountain to the second lighthouse that Nate led us too. It was the most amazing breathtaking view. Once we got down from there we hiked down the mountain to Cape of Good Hope taking lots of pictures along the way. This week defiantly has been a fun-filled week!