THE GIFT OF EDUCATION
This month, we are sharing stories from the ground at Majengo! The following two articles share the experiences of education sponsors who had the opportunity to meet their sponsor children.
Paul & Bonnie McGraw – Sponsors since 2014
“In life, sometimes you have an experience that resonates long after the event is over, and without a doubt this was one of those.”
“Our trip to Tanzania in September ended with an amazing visit to Majengo. We have sponsored Emmanuel for some time, so realizing that we would be in Tanzania we ensured that this visit was part of our travel itinerary from the very beginning.
The North American Majengo staff were instrumental in making this dream happen. We were somewhat anxious about our visit, how would we be received, would we get to see our sponsored child, would Bonnie be able to maintain her composure?
All of our anxieties were quickly overcome. Our first impression was how happy, healthy and excited the children were. We saw joy in their faces, their voices and their actions. Pretty hard not to be moved and fall in love when 30 children from the Majengo Pre-School Program sing a song for you with their sweet voices! They welcomed us without question and we quickly recognized that these children are so loved by those responsible for their care. Their dedication to these ‘little ones’ is beyond description.
Simone from Majengo Canada gave us a tour of the facility, and we were so impressed with the children’s library, their tidy sleeping rooms, their health room, their eating area, their lovely vegetable garden and their space for play. The home was so well planned and organized!
We did meet our sponsored child Emmanuel, and although our time together was short, as he was in class, we left with a very deep feeling of satisfaction that in some small way our financial support was clearly making a difference in a young man’s life. We observed first hand the wonderful impact that Majengo has on these children’s lives.
Our travel friends were so moved with their visit that they now sponsor a child and highlighted this visit in their annual Christmas newsletter. In life, sometimes you have an experience that resonates long after the event is over, and without a doubt this was one of those.
We were deeply moved by our visit and so proud to be a Majengo sponsor!”
Paul and Bonnie McGraw, sponsors of Emmanuel since 2014.
Hilary MacMillan – Sponsor since 2014
“I am so happy to see what an impact sponsoring a child can have on the rest of their lives.”
“My journey with Majengo started in early 2014 when my friend asked me if I was interested in donating to this new charity she was working with and sponsoring this girl named Loveness. For such a manageable yearly donation I could help this girl get an education. I was eager to help.
Majengo, to me, was the stories I heard, the pictures I saw, and as amazing as they were I didn’t have a personal connection with the children, the town, or the community. This all changed in November 2014 when I decided to go to Tanzania, stay there for three weeks, spend every day at Majengo. I also got to meet Loveness.
What I saw was a small glimpse into the daily routine of these children who, despite having very hard starts in life, always have a smile on their face. Each child at Majengo has a unique personality. Some run up to you, hug you, want to touch your hair, and hold your hand, while some are more shy and take time to warm up to the volunteers.
I was very excited to meet Loveness and I quickly came to realize she was a shy young woman, who would sheepishly look at me and run away. Right then and there I knew my goal over the next three weeks was to slowly make her feel more comfortable with me. It started with small glances at each other which quickly worked up to smiling at each other, then the following week she would say hi to me (and then quickly run away), and finally the last week she came out of her shell enough that she would have a conversation with me and took a photo. Seeing her slow progress over those three weeks made me realize that I would be sponsoring this young woman for as long as she needed it.
Since 2014, I have been getting updates from Majengo and every time I smile because it always lets me know that Loveness is coming out of her shell more and more everyday and is excelling at school. I am so happy I got the opportunity, even if it was for such a short time, to see what an impact sponsoring a child can have on the rest of their lives. I am very proud to be a Majengo sponsor.”
Hilary MacMillan, sponsor of Loveness since 2014