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Summer Adventure

Week One

SOUTH AFRICA | Thursday, 8 August 2013 | Views [511] | Comments [2]

This trip has been amazing so far. I'm volunteering with an organization called Dreams to Reality. The organization benefits children and families who live in the local townships. The township is a very poor area that consists of shanties. Shanties are house type structures that are built out of large sheets of metal. The township looks exactly as the media portrays it. But the people are very much like the people in poor areas in the U.S. (Oak Cliff, Third Ward, Compton, Chicago, etc.) There is major crime, drugs, and violence just like any other poor community.

I'm staying in a volunteer house that's in the "nice" part of Muizenberg and it's about a 5 minute drive from the township. It's safe for the most part but walking somewhere alone is not the smartest thing to do. There's three houses of volunteers (about 50 people total), and we all live in the same neighborhood. There are volunteers from every part of the world (U.S., Canada, Australia, Austria, China, Japan, Indonesia, England, France, and so many more.)

Our volunteers are split up at different schools. Two of the schools are elementary and three are day care centers. They are all located in the township. Of course I'm working at one of the day care centers. So far I have been working in a preschool classroom that has 30 children ages 1 to 3 years. It's CRAZY.... Before we got here, there were only two teachers in the classroom. The teachers are very stern and don't allow the children freedom to explore their environment. This is because there are so many children and they can easily get out of control and the teachers will be out numbered. 

I've been in the classroom since Tuesday. The first day was very hectic because it is winter here so it's cold and rainy most of the day so the children are not allowed to go outside and burn off energy. Also, the children wanted to test me and the other volunteer since we were new. But today, Wednesday, was much better. I feel like I've been in the classroom for forever already. I've already chosen favorites which happens to be the "naughtiest" boys in the class. I was drawn to them because they get so much negative attention from the teachers. They only get attention when they misbehave so I try my best to notice their good actions and verbally praise them in front of everyone so they understand there are other ways to get attention. As a result they listened to my directions most of the day. The teacher noticed that I hugged on them a lot and praised them when they did something right and she asked that I not do that. So I'm hoping to build a relationship with the teacher so when I suggest things she won't be offended... Hopefully. 

South Africa is a BEAUTIFUL, I mean GORGEOUS country. Most of the locals are extremely friendly and sort of feel like long lost family when we interact. So far I've visited main town, CapeTown. It's very hipster to my surprise. Since it's my mom's last few days this weekend we're going to Robben Island to tour Mandela's prison cell. We're going shopping in the main town, and we're going on a city tour/wine tasting. 

I'm adding pictures and videos of some things I've seen so far. Let me know if I'm writing too much and I'll attempt to scale it down next week lol. There's so much I want to share but I don't want my posts to be overwhelming. I miss everyone and I hope you guys' weeks having been going great!

Tags: africa, capetown, cold, muizenberg, rain, south africa, teach, volunteer, wet, winter

Comments

1

This is wonderful! Write all that you need to write! This is not about us but your journey. In the great words of the Care Bears, "Sharing is caring." lol Love ya girl and be safe!!

  CeCe King Aug 11, 2013 5:36 AM

2

Haha!! Ok!

  Joy Aug 11, 2013 5:44 AM

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