Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Digging a Well

Thanks to a grant Cameron received from the Rotary International and several other smaller Rotary Clubs, Espwa will have a new source of water to irrigate our crops. Work began to dig the well this week. The men had to dig down 18 feet or so before they hit water and they have to continue digging to reach enough water to irrigate all the crops.

When pipes arrive in a couple months in a container purchased through Cameron's efforts they will be able to disperse the water throughout the agricultural fields. This will insure that the fields are irrigated without having to rely on consistent rainfall.

We are so excited to see this project put into action! Thanks Cameron and all those who have helped make this a reality!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Meet JB

Meet Myduby, or as his friends like to call him, JB. JB found Espwa after his mother abandoned him, and his father was unable to find work to pay for JB and his sister's care. JB is nine years old, and loves to sing. He is very perceptive, polite, and impressively mature for his age. We love seeing this guy's bright smile around the village! 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Paving the Way to Fun

Yesterday evening, the loud engine of a bulldozer hummed through Espwa. Everyone lined up to witness the huge truck demolish the old restrooms in the boy's village and clear the rubble away to make room for a brand new basketball court and soccer field. 

We are so excited to break ground on this project. The kids will surely love the recreation space! We are especially thankful for the Macon family for their generous donation that is helping to greatly improve the boy's village. More pictures to come as construction continues! 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Fun Activities for a Tuesday afternoon

This afternoon our long term volunteers and visiting friend planned a day full of activities for the kids at Espwa. In the morning a group of the younger boys made their way over to the Guest House for the first activity. The volunteers taught the boys a few songs and they sang and clapped along to the new words.

After the songs, they learned how to make bracelets with pipe cleaners and beads that each symbolize one piece of the story of Jesus. The volunteers led the activity with the help of a few Espwa graduates who are learning English and helped translate the meaning of the beads. 

After the craft, the kids went out into the field for some fun with a parachute. They laughed and shouted as they lifted the parachute above their heads and watched it flutter into the air. One by one they took turns running underneath and teaching their favorite games to our volunteers. 

Later in the morning a group of Espwa girls came over for another round of crafts and activities. A fun way to spend a Tuesday afternoon this summer. Many thanks to our volunteers!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Some Light Reading

This afternoon, our long-term volunteer Jane and her children visited the babies with some fun books to read. The kiddos loved the bright pictures, and the older girls helped translate the simple sentences to Creole.

Thanks to Jane and her family for helping us plant a love of reading in these children early on! 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Dinner Fresh from the Garden

This week a new batch of eggplants were brought to the kitchen. The eggplants are grown as part of the agricultural program at Espwa and will provide another source of nutrition for the kids when they can be harvested.

The ladies in the kitchen were given a large batch of eggplants ripe from the garden by the agriculture group and immediately set to work cooking them. The kids are always excited when we are able to introduce small changes in their weekly meals and the eggplants were certainly a big hit.

Bon appetit!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Bon fet, Nancy!

Yesterday we celebrated Nancy's birthday. Nancy is our Director of Childcare, which means she coordinates various activities for the children (such as English Club and field days), listens to their needs, and manages how donations are dispersed among them.

Her office is always busy, but the staff took a break yesterday afternoon to surprise her with cake and champagne. Happy Birthday, Nancy! We are grateful for all you do.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

English Summer Classes

In addition to the fun outdoor summer camp many of the Espwa kids attend in the early morning, some of the older boys have taken it upon themselves to teach English classes later in the day. About six older boys who speak English, offer these classes to boys and girls of all ages to teach them some of the basics of the English language. They hold classes in the school building on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from 9-11.

The students are making great progress and some classes have already learned greetings, body parts, and colors. We hear kids practicing their new language skills in the village, repeating the new words they've learned in class. It will be no time at all before they'll be able to have basic conversations with some of our english-speaking visitors.

Learning doesn't stop at Espwa during the summer! We wish the older boys good luck as they pass on what they know to the younger kids!