Impressions of South Africa

Forty-one hours.  That’s how long it took to get home from my recent trip to South Africa.  We left East London, South Africa on a Thursday morning, traveled to Cape Town, London, Philadelphia, Orlando and finally arrived on our doorstep Friday night.  That was eight days ago yet I still feel like I’m in a fog.  It was a long trip, but so worth it.

My husband and I have always enjoyed traveling.  The first five years of our marriage were childless so we traveled when work schedules allowed.  We had some fun family trips during the child-rearing years; not too many trips on our own though. Now that we live in an empty nest, it is easy to say yes to one of my favorite questions:

Do you want to go to (fill in the blank)?

We love to visit different parts of the world.  These trips are even more rewarding when they involve missions work.  That was the purpose of our most recent trip to Cape Town, South Africa.

We traveled with a team of nine from One More Child Global, an organization whose mission is to provide Christ-centered services to meet the physical, spiritual, emotional and medical needs of children and families throughout the world.  One More Child Global partners with Living Hope headquartered in Capri near Cape Town, South Africa.  These two ministries, working together, are reaching hundreds of children living in several townships; providing meals and after school Christian kids clubs.  Our team visited six ministry sites around Cape Town and traveled to another in East London.  In between visiting and lending a hand at the ministry sites, we explored the area around Cape Town.

Here are a few of my impressions of Cape Town, South Africa

  • With tall mountains that end at the sea, the Cape of Good Hope feels like the edge of the world
  • The Western Cape is home to some unusual animals 
  • Things aren’t always as they seem – Table Rock looks like a giant rock but when you’re on top, it’s covered with flora and fauna

     

  • If you close your eyes while listening to a group of South Africans sing worship songs, it sounds like heaven
  • Children laugh, giggle, smile and play the same
  • Fifty-Seven is probably too old to join in a rousing game of Four-Square
  • A little hand fits nicely in your own (I wish I had taken a picture of the little guy who didn’t let go of my hand for a solid hour)
  • Forgiveness is powerful, can you imagine giving tours of the prison that was your home for five years?
  • There are amazing people doing important work in a difficult place, bringing hope to a generation of South Africans
  • It was strange to see areas of extreme poverty right next to very nice neighborhoods

    Neighborhoods
    Neighborhoods
  • It was difficult to comprehend a severe water crisis in a place surrounded by water
  • You can fast become friends when you are working together for a common cause

    Living Hope + One More Child = Blessed Children
    Living Hope + One More Child + Blessed Children
  • You can do more than you think you can

I’m still processing all that I saw, felt, experienced in South Africa.  It will probably be so for days, weeks and months to come.  A piece of my heart remains behind.  I hope that I will be able to return one day.

In the meantime, would you join me in a couple of things?  Would you pray for the people of South Africa?  Pray for rain and an end to the severe water crisis.  Pray for racial healing in the land as well.  It is a complex situation that is difficult to fully understand.  If you are able, would you consider giving financial support to a reputable ministry?  I personally recommend One More Child Global.  There are many needs all over the world and we are charged with looking out for those less fortunate. Pinterest Pin - Poor

Have you been to South Africa?  What were your impressions?  Is there a place where you have traveled that especially touched your heart?  I would love to hear about it.


12 thoughts on “Impressions of South Africa

  1. I feel like I’ve taken a mini-tour with you as my tour guide. Thank you for sharing the highlights of your trip. I imagine you made lifelong friends in your group. 🙂 I will most definitely add the people of South Africa to my prayer journal. God bless you, Kim!

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  2. Hi Kim,
    Your photos are incredible! It does look like the end of the world, but in a most beautiful way! I’m so glad you had the opportunity to have such an extraordinary experience. I will definitely pray!
    I have a lot of flying anxiety, so some of the far away places I’d love to visit seem impossible. I’d have to take a few bottles of valium to fly to them. LOL. One country I’d love to visit is Israel, and I’d also love to go to the Cotswolds in England. Maybe someday.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, I understand about the flying. It’s not my favorite thing but fortunately, my desire to travel exceeds my fear of flying. Sometimes I do need to take something. My husband and I are going to Israel for the first time this November. I’m really excited about it. I would love to visit the Cotswolds too and also the Channel Islands of Guernsey and Jersey. If we both make it to that part of the world, we should meet for tea!

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      1. Yes! We should definitely meet in one of those places! I’m excited for you re: going to Israel. How did you get yourself to accept the fact that you’ll be on the plane for a long time? (I think going there is about 12 hours.) My husband really, really wants to go. I’m just not sure if I can sit on a plane for that long without flipping out completely.

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      2. One thing that helps going over is that most flights leave in the evening and fly during the night. You can take something to help you sleep which makes the flight go by faster. It’s also a great time to catch up on movies. 🙂

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  3. Thank you so much for sharing your journey with the beautiful pictures. You brought back so many memories for me of living in Ethiopia sixth thru eighth grades. Each girl in my girl scout troop got to choose a baby in the orphanage to adopt. We didn’t bring them home, but we would provide many of the needs for that child including baby food, diapers, and clothing. These babies lived the first year of their life a metal crib. My little Michael smelled like Baby Magic lotion after I would give him a bath. What pulled at my heart was walking through a courtyard of toddlers and young children with runny noses, pulling on our legs, hoping we would pick them up and pay attention to them.

    I certainly understand part of your heart being back in South Africa. I will keep the people of South Africa in my prayers.

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  4. Great photos. Much poverty as simply wayy too many migrate from across Africa to share in the supposed riches….that mostly don’t exist. About 10% of our citizens are immigrants, many illegal. It places tremendous pressure on public services, aggravated by lack of funding because of very corrupt government.

    Having said that, Cape Town spans more than 125km/75mi from Atlantis to Cape Point. I guess you only had a glimpse.

    Thank you for the great photos, for your visit and keep sharing the Love of Jesus.

    Those baboons can be very aggressive, destructive, they break into people’s homes despite radical protective measures and will kill dogs. They have no natural enemy and do as they please, as the tree-huggers object when their numbers are controlled.

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    1. Thanks for the comment. You are right, we only had a glimpse of Capetown, time-wise and area-wise. In that brief time I learned that it is a complex situation with no easy solutions. It was encouraging to see different groups ministering to the people, trying to make a difference. And baboons are pretty much terrifying.

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      1. Hehehe baboons are sometimes less scary than people. The situation with people is usually misunderstood as it hardly ever is represented with facts. There is much populism, opinions – highly emotional same as with seals, penguins or baboons. Truth usually is the first fatality.

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