Things are certainly getting busy here now. This morning, I spoke at a youth conference. The conference was about marriage/love/sex from a Godly perspective. It was a lot of fun, and the young people were certainly interested in my Western perspective. They are really hungry and interested to know about building good relationships. Many people here get married too young (teens) and end up divorced and remarried many times. In the village, the situation is even worse...one lady I know of, has 8 different kids each with their own father. Education is essential to help break this cycle. I told the youth all about waiting...waiting...waiting. Building a strong foundation in their relationships and waiting until they are sure they're with the right person--the stuff I learnt the hard way. lol
From the conference I jetted down to the village to follow up on day 3 of our construction project. The foundation is really starting to take shape. Here's a picture of the crew!
This morning our truck we organized was quite late in arriving, so I chipped in as much as I could to help make lunch for our hard workers. Life has changed and cooking has taken on a whole new meaning. This is the same "kitchen" the women use everyday to make porridge for the 300+ kids at the Luyando community school. I cleaned and scaled fish and made Nshima—a staple made from maize. It’s really thick and heavy and pretty hard to stir. I didn’t my best while the ladies laughed and I teared up from the smoke in my eyes. They are amazing women to do this everyday!
On the downside there was a situation that happened that really struck my heart. A young man who had been faithfully coming everyday to help, was absent today. Just as we were leaving he came to the car. He was very drunk. In his broken words, he told me he had been there early but because we were late, he left. Had the truck arrived on time, this young man's day would have been very different. It made me feel very sad. Alcoholism is rampant in the village and I had just been discussing the issue that same morning. Out of sheer boredom and lack of direction, this small village of 300 families is overwhelmed everyday by drunkenness. Beer is cheap and provides an escape.
There was a time a few years ago when a local football team had been sponsored for the community. It was such a good opportunity for these young men. They were really motivated by it. We have so many opportunities in our countries that sometimes we don't realize the importance of social programs like sports and arts. I hope that we find new inspiration for these young (and old) people. I hope that in the container there is something to light a new fire in them. I pray that we find solutions in the long term to compel them to move towards healthy futures.