Disclaimer: The written contents of this website are mine personally and do not reflect the opinions, policies or position of any institution or individual(s) mentioned herein, including the US Government, Peace Corps, the Government of Namibia, or its citizens. Any similarity is purely coincidental.

Friday, July 20, 2007

When someone touches your life....

This isn't a blog post about how someone in Africa changed my life, it's about someone from home who led me to Africa and how she changed my life.

When I was 16, (my best friend at the time) Sara's mom had recently returned from a trip to Zaire (now DRC) after working in a refugee camp. Her stories and pictures really struck me. She told me about how the kids would just break into song and start clapping. I just knew I wanted to experience this too.

Her mom also started a 2nd hand clothing store in Richmond, VA called Pennies for Heaven. It was not just a clothing store, but a symbol of hope for so many people living in poverty right in my own city. I worked with Pennies off and on over the years....sorting clothes, making bagged lunches, and handing out gifts on Christmas day to families in one of the most dangerous parts of Richmond (one of the most memorable Christmas's I've ever experienced) . I started realizing that there needs to be a change in this world.....and there is something I can do about it.

My dream of working in Africa led me to apply for the Peace Corps, which led me to Swakopmund, Namibia. I live a wonderful life in Swakopmund. I have a fantastic job as a music teacher at MYO, I sing with an uplifting choir, and have made many lifelong friends. My 18months abroad has helped me feel stronger about who I am and who I will become. And the kids I work with....my goodness are they musical!

To my dear friend Sara and her family, please know how much your mom meant to so many of us. Her inspiration will live on......


Post a Comment

<< Home