For our time in Swaziland we stayed at the New Hope Centre. This place was one of the most inspirational organizations we worked with. Upon arrival, our host informed us that Swaziland is dying of AIDS. Literally. 78% of the people are thought to have HIV/AIDS. New Hope Centre is an orphanage that promotes leadership; their slogan is "orphans today, leaders tomorrow". Interestingly enough, New Hope doesn't search for orphans, but allows God to lead specific children (orphans who have lost all family members: mom, dad, aunties, grandfathers...) through their gates.
We helped build a garden at New Hope using principles of "Farming God's Way" with the children living there. Through this we formed deep relationships with the kids, some of the most meaningful of the entire semester. It was really great to live at New Hope for the week, at the end of the school/work day we got to hang out with them. On our last night there we had a braai and listened to many stories of how God has worked in some of the children's lives. One boy had prayed for a bicycle for six years. Wow. It was moving to realize how essential God is for them. God was their everything.
One kid, named Asher, grew up taking care of animals that his family owned instead of attending school. Now, at New Hope, he is able to do both. The centre offers lots of unique opportunities to nurture the kids' passions.
- New Hope is striving to be self sustainable
- All the kids have the last name 'Abraham' since we are all children of God
Written by: Andrew and Emily