Wednesday 27 April 2011

Communicators in Mozambique

Some of our team have just been to Maputo in Mozambique to hold an Effective Communication Workshop with the aim to build up missional communicators in this part of Africa. Check out the video...

AfriCom in Maputo from YWAM AfriCom on Vimeo.

Sunday 24 April 2011

Street life

A few weeks ago, Becky organised prostitution outreach training for anyone at our church who was interested, through  Straatwerk (an organisation that enables local churches to reach out to the working women in their neighbourhoods). Two weeks later, Becky took those who had been recruited onto the busiest street in our area on a Friday night. With three women at the front who approached the working ladies, and three at the back, praying for them, they met, chatted and prayed with a number of women. Our local pastor was the designated body guard. The prayer beforehand was vital preparation and was obviously answered because they had instant success the first night. Usually it takes many weeks, if not months, of meeting and building up friendships with the ladies before they will trust and take a step towards a new life. However, that first night they met a lady – we'll call her 'Pat' – who said she wanted to get off the streets, and off the drugs. We met her a few days later, at her shack in the township and took her to a local charity, run by a church, which provides counselling and support from a social worker for those who want to give up drugs. After a brief word from the counsellor, we helped her enrol on the programme. We then paid for her to travel to her mother's house for the weekend to spend time with her children, and to get her off the streets, even if just for a few days.

The following week, we met another lady on the street in the same situation, we'll call her 'Cherrie'. She and her husband were both addicted to a number of drugs and she worked the street to fund their habit. We met her a few days later at her home in the township and she too is enrolling on a rehabilitation programme through the same church charity. However, the same day, Pat failed to turn up for her first rehab appointment, which we found very discouraging. We later visited her home and she said that she had been at the police station bailing out a relative. It is hard to know whether these stories are true or not, but we'd like to believe that she had a good reason for not being there. I feel she does genuinely want to give up drugs.

Although it may appear to have gone off to a great start, and we have had some great successes already, we are aware that this work will inevitably see many challenges and fall backs. We are just starting out and we're very motivated by our current successes. Please pray that we stay focused, even as we face challenges.

Thursday 14 April 2011

Stepping into Sudan

This week we are reviewing the trip made by two members of the team to Uganda and Sudan to help a team of pioneers scout out some new areas to work. By producing this video, AfriCom is helping champion this work and communicate it to a wider audience. More information can be found on the AfriCom blog

Outreach to Issore, South Sudanfrom YWAM AfriCom on Vimeo.

Monday 11 April 2011

Part of a team

Heathcote Safari: Part of a team: "This week we are working with a team of people from five nations. We are working in two languages. Our ways of thinking and working have been strongly influenced by Europe, South America and Africa. Our ages span three decades. And it's been great..."

Tuesday 5 April 2011

Holding the fort

This week most of the AfriCom team have gone to Mozambique to hold a workshop for YWAM volunteers on effective communication. Building a communications network in Africa involves travelling to the region and face-to-face meetings and training. This means that I'm left holding the fort, so to speak, with a skeleton staff-base in the Cape Town office. It's been great, nonetheless, to take this first step of co-ordinating activities from here; putting a toe-in-the-water of directing the operations here, knowing that in 10 days the current team director returns to pick things back up again!

Meantime, Becky is enjoying time with Joshua though she has started back working part time with the co-ordination of the volunteers for Justice ACTs. It's a process that we're going through as a family to establish roles and responsibilities; trying to get everything done (washing, cleaning, cooking), whilst working full time in a more responsible role (for Pete), keeping up with work activities/updates/meetings (for Becky) and getting enough sleep. This balancing act is what many parents go through, I'm sure. Josh is a great little boy who, despite getting a bit of collic on occasion, isn't a particularly grumpy baby. He sleeps a lot and when he's awake he's generally quite happy. He loves all of his aunties and uncles at YWAM and in the community here.

Phil enjoying time with Joshua
We have just enjoyed a lovely visit from Phil, Becky's younger brother, who came for two weeks. The timing of his visit was really good, as he was able to help with cooking, cleaning, washing-up, feeding and nappy changing. An extra pair of hands really helped, especially during the six days Becky was ill. He also had the chance to do some tourist activities, like climbing Table Mountain and surfing. We took him and Joshua to see the penguins for Joshua's one month birthday celebration, which is also the location where Becky went into labour!

If you're following our blog, please comment/contact us with any thoughts/feelings/ updates. As we wrestle with the new things we are facing (being family, new roles at work), we love to know how you are doing. We value your communication about your life, wherever you are at the moment and to get feedback on the stuff we're doing.