JessicaAn update from Jessica, a Perkins School of Theology student studying in South Africa:

Today, Michelle and I went to an orphanage in Cape Town called Nazareth House, which takes care of orphaned children from birth until adulthood (unless otherwise adopted), as well as senior citizens in need.


Nazareth House, at Table Mountain

Many of the children suffer from health challenges such as cerebral palsy, HIV/AIDS, burns, and other maladies. Today, I mainly worked with the 12 infant children, caring for their basic needs and trying to give them as much one-on-one attention as possible. A few of the children were incredibly tiny, as they were born prematurely. It was so sad to think that these children are without parents (many of them came to Nazareth on their first day).

Michelle primarily worked with toddlers, playing with them in the beautiful yard filled with palm trees. The women were short-staffed today, and so they were very grateful to have our help. Because of the children’s position, we were not allowed to take pictures of them; however, I did take some pictures of the orphanage so everyone could see how gorgeous it is sitting right at the bottom of Table Mountain.


At Pine Town Methodist’s community garden

A few days ago, we also had the opportunity to use our green thumbs. We divided up into several groups and assisted some of the caretakers at Pine Town Methodist church by helping them work in their community gardens. The church has created many of these gardens all around the rural areas of KwaZulu-Natal. They are a cheap way for the caretakers to provide nutritious fruits and vegetables to the many orphaned children who are now in their care. It was impressive to see how the Zulu people use everything they have for multiple purposes. They do not use any unnatural chemicals or pesticides and use all organic fertilizers. This helps ensure the safety and freshness of the food. They gave me some to sample and it was easy to notice the difference. The gardeners begin and end every work day in prayer and were so hospitable to me.