Winding Down, Windy Days, and Used Bicycle Spokes

Winding Down
 I have less than a month left now before I head home for holidays...Christmas holidays that is. I'm sure most of us are not in that mind frame yet, but, wow, this year has gone fast.

As the programs come to an end for the year, I am pondering on what the new year might look like. With the hope of having a more sustainable means of keeping myself here, I am planning to start a business in Zambia. We are just in the planning stage, but we hope to bring online education and business solutions to Zambian clients. Stay posted on more about that in the coming months.

It will provide a way that I can work for money while I'm in Zambia, and still support community projects.

Windy Days
In Mwenge B, the community centre I use to teach English and knitting was struck by a windstorm. Half of the roof has been lifted off. It's quite sad as it was a really nice little building. It used to be a community school but when the founder died (a local man), no one was left to care for it. I would love to continue to use this place and if you are interested, please consider donating to help restore it. We only have weeks before the rains starts (and I leave) and that will mean serious destruction so there is just a short time left. Click Donate. (If you want to donate specifically to this cause, please email me with a heads up. )

Used Bicycle Spokes
I'm filling my suitcases with bunnies to help raise money for Hope Ignited projects--so get ready and think of all the babies you know or kids who would love one in their Christmas stocking. The are very colourful and cute.

We've also had a real challenge getting thin needles here (for our thin wool). A few of the women have opted to use bicycle spokes as a replacement! Can you imagine that! Well, it works I guess, but I'm sure they would love your old needles. Here's a picture just so you believe me haha. Recycling in action!

So when I'm back home, I will also be collecting knitting needles, crochet needles, general knitting supplies (especially those plastic needles for closing seams) and wool to bring back to Zambia with me. Our wool choices here are very limited and of a somewhat low quality, so it's great when the ladies get some of the special stuff from Canada and can sell if for a bit more.

A little more...
Making things work in Zambia has certainly had it's challenges over the last few years, but I have been encouraged by the connections I've kept since I started here. We were laughing during out meeting today because one of the ladies, Hilda, who hardly ever speaks English (although she understands about 70%) was just chatting away. I couldn't believe it and she didn't even realize it until I pointed it out. It was awesome to see how far she had come.

Another lady, Neka, came into our meeting so sad and down. She didn't seem to want to talk about it. Randomly, today, I happened to share a small testimony about some personal struggles and what God had been teaching me. Whatever it was, it seemed to apply to her too as I watched her face lighten up and she started to smile. By the end of the meeting, she was the one who led us in a song.

Small victories in a big world--we make a difference one person, one moment, one day at a time. If we don't give up, hopefully we will see how we've helped another soul.

See you all very soon. Natasha.