This has been an eventful week with a number of highs and lows. The children in primary school worked hard to complete their exams and Kapedo – one of the older children and my right hand man travelled to Kapernet to get birth certificates for 14 children which are essential for them to register for the national exams in September.
We worked hard on getting all the children writing to their sponsors so that we can ensure they are thanked properly for their continued support. As I am now getting to know the children well I try to add in some personal comment on how the child is doing which I think is important for them to know.
My main excitement this week was getting the goal posts, cement and white wash for the new pitch for our team the Carol All Stars. Taking four of the older boys with me we went to the hardware shop to select posts etc. Travelling back with it all packed in a tuk-tuk and us five crammed in as well was hilarious. Everyone has been out on the pitch cutting the grass, levelling, erecting the posts and marking in preparation for our first home game this afternoon. We are all really looking forward to it and I’m going to be jumping up and down and cheering just like I do at a match at home (they already think I’m a bit bonkers so that’ll just improve my image).
I got a lovely note from one of the boys thanking me for the posts and for caring so much for all the children here. I was very touched and it make all the long hours I am needing to do totally worth it.
One of the lows was that we had some items stolen from the center this week. I was not impressed with the compound security and this enforced that view. I met with the security company and we discussed how the very large compound is kept secure in the future. I met with the children and reinforced how important it is that they are vigilant and that they should ensure the items are returned (it must have been a local person who took the items). After my big speech about responsibility and their home they all cheered and the older boys, led by Kevin undertook to find a way to retrieve the items. The meeting was followed by an intruder being spotted in the grounds! All the older children headed off with the guards and searching the bushes in the compound. I started to feel quite sorry for the theif! They didn’t catch him in the end but the next day all items were returned……I was so pleased that the children feel they have ownership and a sense of belonging and that the older children rose to the challenge of taking responsibility for all.
It is exactly a month since I arrived and so much has happened. It remains challenging, frustrating at times, exciting and so rewarding.