Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Our last few days at Hands

When we arrived back at Hands Village after our few days at Hluvukani, we were able to enjoy a few days’ rest. Richard went immediately on to Klerksdorp but Andrew, Sam and I stayed at the Village to rest.
Hands Village is made up of about a dozen or so small one story houses. Long term volunteers live in these houses. Short term visitors like us stay in four bedded rooms with shared male and female toilet and shower blocks. We share a kitchen and dining room which is also used as a meeting room. We are allocated cupboard and fridge space for food.
There are not many short term volunteers here at the moment so our part of the site seems really quiet. More visitors are arriving soon and I believe the rooms and the farm (Sanderson House) are fully booked later on in the year.
Even though we would only be staying at Hands for a matter of days, we were included in the invitation to a barbeque (braai) to celebrate a birthday party on Saturday.
We joined the other long term staff at a small lake a short drive from Hands. The sun was hot so we stayed in the shade eating and talking while the boys fished in the lake.
The conversation was very interesting because the Hands volunteers come from all over the world and so inevitably conversation turns to the differences between the cultures and the words used for things.
These people have all been called from their lives in their own countries and have found themselves living together. They work as a team or as a body to seek out the neediest children and to facilitate the local community to support them so that they can continue to live in their own homes.

Our family and the members of the teams we bring out each year are also part of this body and though we don’t work daily with Hands, we have a responsibility to be advocates for the children so that their voices can be heard.