Reflections after 6 MonthsNovember 6, 2013 3:46 pm
As of next week, I will have have been at JBFC for six months and though I am way, way, way, beyond any type of honeymoon, I still feel as though I am one of the luckiest people in the world.
As I hit that six month mark as well as the holiday season, I thought it would be good to reflect, and I suppose try to figure out, why it is that I am so lucky and to make sure that I appreciate these
First, I get to spend every single day with an amazing team- drinking coffee, planning, and learning with Chris, walking at near sprint pace with Mzee Kitula from one building or repair project to the next, working with Rachel to try to cheer up or teach a girl who had a bad day at school, going over staff evaluations with Mr. Samo while he simultaneously puts on his tennis shoes in preparation for an afternoon match with one of his students, having “WhatsApp”conversations with Ashli and “gmail” conversations with Carene.
Second, I have been able to see JBFC grow, prosper, and affect positive social change since the day I arrived here. In these short six months, hard work and generosity came together to finish both JBFC’s
bathroom, long a dream, is nearly ready for use, as is the new pig pen. New poly-culture rows, essential to JBFC’s goal of sustainability, have been planted and the existing ones continue to amaze. An entire 7th grade class passed their national exams (no small feat in Tanzania). A Joseph and Mary Form Two (9th grade) class took their national exams for the first time.
Now, to be honest, to be a part of all of that alone would make anyone pretty lucky. But for me, and anyone who has ever worked, volunteered, or visited JBFC, it isn’t even close to the best part.
I, and so many other lucky ones, get to spend nearly every day with 43 of the most amazing girls in the world (and four kinda-cool boys). I have had the chance, the opportunity, the blessing, to build
friendships with 47 superstars who I now consider nothing short of family. I could list a special memory, or moment, that I have had with each of them but that would take forever, so here are a few.
An on-again-off-again friendship with Neema Ramadan in which we talk, laugh, and joke every day for a week, and then she won’t talk to me for the whole following week (and I still say nice things about her even though she will never look at me when I try to take her picture for Ashli).
Being Pili’s first soap customer for her new Ziwani Soaps business and hearing her say, with a tear in
her eye, “Wow, I am so proud.”
Their smiles make me happy, their tears make me sad, and their laughs make my world.
Special thanks again to photographer, Elisa Masso (www.elisamariephoto.com), who took several of the beautiful pictures featured in this blog.
This post was written by Mainsprings