Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Post #9: One Last Thing About COZV

Throughout my time at COZV I made a list of observations on the spot with some specific needs that I saw they could use in case there are other teams heading over or if you might want to help with one of the needs yourself. Now also keep in mind that what we think they would like is not always what they need. When we send over things we need to make sure that it is not sending the wrong impression to the community at large. Sometimes the gifts we send as a gesture of our love can in reality be more of an issue of the children being perceived as “well-to-do” in their community and what we mean for good could possibly do more damage than good in their immediate context. So as people influenced by western thinking, we need to ask first if this is something they really need or is it something that WE want to give because we think it would be nice for them. So I would recommend always starting a dialogue with the COZV office and missionaries before you do a major purchase. In fact, they may have bigger needs that may be more helpful for you to support with your funds. Also, included in this list are things we MUST DO to make our trip more organized next time. So with that, here was my list:

1. Basic preschool posters for the Mufuta Feeding Center’s preschool such as ABC’s, Numbers, Colors, Days of the Week. They could always use chalk too.

2. Travis could always use materials for devotionals and youth talks. I gave him a lot of stuff. But to have some new materials to work with every time a group goes over would be excellent I am sure.

3. Always make a list that gives a description of each bag we bring with us.

4. With each bag we take, put a paper inside the bag with our destination on it and our group name with our home address also.

5. Remember that the boarder closes at 6PM!!!

6. They could really use a defibulator. A simple heart problem could end in death with the health care system there in Africa. With a defibulator they can at least have a fighting chance to help resuscitate someone in case their heart stops.
7. The only people able to drive that live in the village are Travis and Lorna. There are multiple adults and teens who NEED to get their driver’s license in order to share in this responsibility. Without this help, the kids are limited in what they can do when it comes to sports, going into town or their villages. It will be all the more necessary as the Epiphany House begins preparing the older teens to learn skills and land jobs within their community.

8. The teens love the basic games: checkers, chess, yatzee. This needs to be a given every time a group goes over. Other games are nice, but they specifically asked me for these. Also the little ones wanted balloons and bubbles. Just always bring these things every time.

9. There is always a need for tools. There are some really decent hardware stores in Namibia. I was actually quite surprised with these stores when I went into town with Uncle Leonard. Bring some money over to help get some basic tools that they could use for projects.

10. They will always need new swings for their swing sets. Bring 3 or 4 with each trip.

11. Tupperware containers and cups. We need to help bring a big supply to fill up the cupboards at the missionary house as well as the guest cabins.

12. Sewing kits. There is always something that needs mending. Always bring a bunch of basic sewing kits.

13. Buy some old-school Bible song CD’s with the classic songs we grew up on in children’s ministry and VBS and Summer camps. I am talking like “Father Abraham” and Pharaoh, Pharaoh”. Expose your team to these songs because they will most likely be asked to sing and they should know some of the basic children’s ministry songs that they can sing anywhere, anytime!

14. And the big ticket item is that they need a new pick up truck. The one they have has served long and well. But it is dying quick. They need one that can handle the back roads well.

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