I am embarrassed and feel so bad that I haven’t updated the website or written a blog in over two years. It is certainly NOT because nothing has been happening with our “One Child” kids in Swaziland. It is because it has been a hard adjustment being back in the States and not having the daily contact with Thoko Khumalo When I lived there we would talk almost everyday to plan, discuss issues, keep each other’s spirits up and to remind each other why we have been called to help “One Child at a Time (and/or) One Heart at a Time. I also felt that writing a blog wouldn’t be as meaningful since I didn’t live in Swaziland anymore. However, I go back each year to keep up the relationship with each of our kids, families, Thoko and our other volunteers (Thini and Sibongile). In addition, Thoko and I talk on the phone at least once a month. We talk about each one of our kids, their successes and challenges, and we discuss exactly how the funds have been spent for the previous month and what to expect for the next month. Thoko and I also send text messages back and forth in between our calls. We always have words of love, faith and hope for each other and our kids. Over the next couple of months I am going to work on updating our website and writing more blogs to share more of the incredible stories of our kids.
Through this ministry we have seen lives change in ways that is nothing short of a miracle. Other changes may not be so dramatic but have still been life changing for the kids, their family members, Thoko, Thini, Sibongile, the One Child board and I. Sharing these joys with others makes me happy and reminds me that I do have a purpose in life. I’ve also come to realize that not sharing these stories is like keeping the light under my bed, and that is not what Christ has called us to do. I was given the incredible opportunity to share the life and love of some pretty incredible people both young and old. I can’t let all that I learned through my experiences and all that One Child at a Time, One Heart at a Time is doing stay locked up in my heart and mind. So the following update on one of our precious kids is hopefully, the first of many more to come.
Nonjabulo is a young girl that a fellow board member, Deb, and I first met in September, 2009. She was 7 months old at the time and very, very sick. One night, I was leading a board meeting of one of the projects in Swaziland that I helped the Methodist Church of Southern Africa in Swaziland get started. It focuses on OVC elementary school age children assisting them with medical care, school fees and school uniforms. As the meeting was coming to an end, Thini asked if we would pray for her 7 month old granddaughter who was very sick with TB and reactions to the ARVs they had started her on. Normally, they don’t put a person, especially a young child, on both TB medication and ARVs together at the same time because they can make the person very sick. But this baby was so sick they had no choice. We were all so incredibly amazed and shocked that this dedicated, Christian woman who was working tirelessly for sick kids in other families and communities had not shared her granddaughter’s health issues. You can be sure that Deb and I made it a point to go over and meet this baby girl the next day.
Since 2009 we have continued to pay for her medical expenses including transportation to come to the hospital to her ARVs. We also supplied her with powdered milk and a fortified porridge to eat every day so she could build up her immune system and take her ARVs. It hasn’t always been a smooth road. There were a few set backs. However, I am so happy to share with you that in January, 2015, Nonjabulo started the 1st grade!