Our St Lucia intern, Stacey Addison, tells us about the difference we are making to the families we support.
Living in rural KwaZulu-Natal you can still be shocked by some of the things you see out on projects, and when we first visited a new family on our 10 Families Programme volunteers were surprised by what they found.
When African Impact volunteers first met ‘Gogo and the four children’, they were very shocked to find that their living conditions were very basic, and that they reside in the depths of the forest in Dukuduku which makes things a lot more difficult for the whole family.
This family struggle on a daily basis and like a lot of families, it’s not always physical donations that they need the most, but also a helping hand, which is where our partners at African Impact demonstrate their great importance.
Basic tasks cannot always be completed so African Impact volunteers help provide assistance with washing clothes, washing dishes, general house work, collecting water and bathing the children. Even picking up rubbish and gardening as well as providing simple educational lessons have also been given to the children as none of them attend school or pre-school.
Although The Happy Africa Foundation were brought in to manage donations for African Impact they also help to pay for some of the resources that are used such as cleaning products, brooms, mops and bin bags.
On our most recent visits, volunteers have made a new ‘Peg-Free’ washing line by twisting twine to make the line, where clothes are then secured by pushing the clothes through the twists which secure the clothes in place. This is an idea that can easily be executed for other families on our Home Assistance Programme, and requires only a small donation of twine with a very sustainable result.
The Happy Africa Foundation believes in sustainable development and living so that once we are no longer assisting these families they have the knowledge to live in a way that can work for them and make general living a lot easier. Of course, we get given a lot of amazing donations here in St Lucia and it’s lovely to give these donations to deserving families such as this. The toys, blankets, towels and clothes are just the icing on the cake when it comes to families who are in greater need of personal possessions, but as you can see these children have the most beautiful smiles and it goes to show that the small things in life go a long way to out a smile on someone’s face.