Friday, May 4, 2012

Africa Wrap Up

Friends, it's been a rough week. We had an unnerving late-night incident at our home (that involved the police), my hard drive crashed, Rusty's truck quit, and we have had 2 very discouraging phone calls with 2 different adoption agencies.  I had planned on writing an adoption update today, but I just can't put my feelings into words yet. I will tell you that we have prayed a lot and I have shed a lot of tears. We would appreciate your prayers for our adoption journey right now. When I can find the words to express what we're struggling through (and when I have a better understanding of everything the agencies have told us) I promise I'll write an update - but until then, you will probably just get some fun blogs that I have been meaning to post for a while! 

We'll start with a "wrap up" of our time in Africa! I shared most of these photos on our Sound of Hope Blog, but thought I would repost them here for all of you too. This is a great summary of our work during our month in Swaziland. If any of the photos interest you, check out the caption. A lot of them have links to videos, blogs, and donation info for certain projects! :)

One of our first days in Swaziland! We loved watching the sun set over the traditional Swazi huts made of mud, sticks and grass.

Check out the new Children's Library we started in the preschool at the Nsoko Carepoint!

This little girl was SO excited about the new books! THANK YOU to everyone who donated to this project!

Working in the Community Garden with Phindile. To find out more about this project CLICK HERE.

Nutritious spinach! Just one of the many healthy vegetables the kids will soon be eating!

School's out! The children are quick to run to the carepoint at the end of each day. Year end donations to The Sound of Hope provided the funds for 112 children in Nosko to go to school this year!

Here are a few of the older girls, hanging out together at the carepoint after school.

This beautiful bowl was a gift from my precious new friend Saulinah. It took her 4 days to weave it by hand! Her son Mdeni was one of the students who got his school fees paid through The Sound of Hope. We loved visiting his homestead and meeting his family!

Thanks to a generous donation, all the preschool kids got new Auburn clothes! You can see the video HERE.

There were new shirts for the Swazi staff we are partnered with too! Our work would not be possible without the help of the Gogos that cook for the children, the D-team, the facilities supervisors, the Clinic Assistant, and the Preschool Teacher!

We're also grateful for the American family we're partnered with that lives in Nsoko full-time. THANK YOU Jen, Eric, Claire, and Jacob for the hard work you do around the clock!

We loved seeing some traditional Swazi dances at the Cultural Center in Ezulwini! I even got a quick dance lesson (video here!)

Only in Africa can you see a Journey of Giraffe on the way to lunch! The wildlife in Swaziland is truly unique!

This is Sotja, a 3 year old double orphan who spends most of his days at our carepoint.  I absolutely fell in love with him!

When we see smiles like this one, it makes all our work worthwhile!

We also posted 7 videos from Africa (and we've got a couple more still to come!) If you missed any of those - you can check them out on our vimeo page HERE.

Thank you to all of you who support us financially and in prayer! You make our work in Swaziland possible!

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