Each week day our group of thirteen, along with Jax (our project leader), Miller and Ash (local co-ordinators), worked on restoring a crèche named “Mandela Park Day Care” situated in Mzwini. The task of watering the vegetables in the garden was my very first task and it was not as simple as getting the hose and turning on the tap. The most basic things I had taken for granted in Australia, I was soon to realize, took a much longer process here. Watering involved walking a short distance to fill buckets of water and individually carry them back. By the time I had reached the vegetables I had already thoroughly watered myself! Every step of the way I received support from the excited kids in the township. No task was ever dull or without reward. A few boys decided to stop their own fun on their hand-made, wooden go-kart and lend it to us to pull the buckets on. If there was a lesson to be learnt that first day it was that we should all try to be more like these boys. Every day was much like this, and every task became a fun activity with laughing children around us. They were always trying to assist us, even when the job really was too labour intensive for them. When they were not assisting they were showering us in hugs and kisses.
Find out more about VA32's projects in South Africa - http://www.volunteerafrica.co.za/