Sunday, 11 June 2017

Saturday 10th & Sunday 11th June - Oshoek Young Leaders Training

On our journey to Oshoek
 This weekend the team participated in a weekend for potential youth leaders in Oshoek. We set out bright eyed and bushy tailed at 6am to make the three hour journey across stunning landscapes to Oshoek. On arrival we were welcomed by sixteen enthusiastic youth, four care workers and a number of Hands at Work volunteers who would be leading the weekend. As we entered some of the youth were huddled around the stove fire eating jam and peanut butter sandwiches and a hot drink. Our first session was a fun game to learn names and with much hilarity followed by beautiful lively worship. It amazed us how fantastic worship and praise could sound with only voices and clapping.

The purpose of the weekend was to encourage servant heart leadership in youth from the local communities and care workers who serve at the local care points. The Hands at Work volunteers who delivered these sessions did this through interactive play, activities and drama. It was a privilege for us the UK/Matlosane team to come along side the youth and observe their insights on what they see at their care points and ideas of how to improve situations. The focus on the Saturday was on building relationships with one another. While the focus on the Sunday was exploring Jesus' model on servant leadership through Matthew 20:28.

Oshoek youth leaders, the Hands at Work team and us
Some games for learning trust...

One of the highlights of the weekend was witnessing how quickly the youth engaged and expressed very considered opinions on the change they wanted to be and see in their communities. For example, when a youth expressed their challenge around lack of equipment to play games and a team leader modelled a game that could be played without equipment for all ages, it was wonderful to see their eyes light up at the possibilities they could take back to their care point. In addition, it was a real revelation to see all the hard work that the care workers put into providing meals for the youth in their care. And again, being involved in preparing and cooking the food taught us cultural differences on how we cook the same vegetables e.g. cabbage, beetroot, butternut squash. In fact we're hoping to put some of the recipes on the blog at a later date.

Do you trust me?
Also it was good to see the youth unpack servant leadership qualities which were written on paper leaves that were then stuck on a tree that had been prepared by the team earlier. Later on in the day, the youth had an opportunity through role play showed how they might exhibit such leadership qualities at their care points. They further had discussion groups around situations which encouraged, challenged and confused them. In the final session the youth made commitments to how they will be the change in their care points and there was an opportunity for their care workers to pray for them and commission them in service, this was a very powerful moment with a true sense of the holy spirit moving. This was a weekend packed with lots of drama, fun, laughter, learning and fellowship. And, our prayer is that these youth and care workers will use all that they learnt and experienced over this weekend to grow in Christ and become the servant leaders that God has called them to be.