Thursday
Jul032014

Alissa's Turn...

Hey everyone!  Wow what a month in Zambia we had!  I wanted to write a blog post of my own since the interns took control of the blog for June which was a major help to me. 

So this blog post is all about our interns. ha ha ha I bet they are scared right now reading this!

I was hesitant to start the Arise Africa intern program because of concern of taking care of college kids for a long period of time in Zambia.   Boy I am so glad I took the challenge and had the interns with us this month. It was amazing!  They were awesome!

From leaving DFW airport with them over a month ago to now it has been such a blessing in my life and Arise Africa's.  We couldn't have had a better group of girls to do life with over there.  Although they didn't know one another beforehand (or very little) they all instantly bonded and were willing to work together for anything.  They fought through not feeling great at times, anxiety, pressure, fear, confusion, and many other things to work to selflessly and hard for those around them. 

So here is MY list of lessons learned from having interns in Africa:

1.  Malaria medicine can cause anxiety, take someone off of it if this or any other weird things are happening to them!

2.  Taylor Swift is apparently a really good song to sing to while on a road trip in the middle of the African bush

3.  Leggings and super big extra large t-shirts are the total fashion statement right now. In fact that is all you need in your wardrobe.

4.  If interns live on Nutella and coke and goldfish for the entire month, they will be fine!

5. Don't forget to remind them when going to Vic Falls and on the game drive that large African men wanting to take them on a walk to see rhinos with AR 15 rifles is actually normal and nothing to be concerned about. 

6.  Explain on day 1 that all water sitting in compounds could be sewage and to avoid it

7.  Disney Movies are great, no matter what age you are

8.  Everyone can all talk at once and somehow hear every conversation happening and still keep talking

9.  They are really good at organizing donations and doing child sponsorship letters

10.  They will make friends with everyone

11.  Having 5 American college girls in your car in Africa draws attention and you get to be known around town as "The Landcruiser with the Texas A&M bumper sticker and hot girls."

12.  Do not trust them with Remy the night guard

13.  They can't cook at the beginning of the month, but they will learn and take care of themselves!

14.  They are willing to help in any way, including manual labor, holding babies that pee on you, coralling kids at Bible camp, cooking and many other things.

15.  Hand them over to your Zambian staff at 6AM and say good luck and don't worry about them until night.  They will manage the mini busses, compounds, and everything else just fine!

16.  When you ask them if they have talked ot their parents back home and they say no but the parents are fine with that, the parents are actually not fine with that and I should expect an email!

18. They are pretty good drivers, even in Zambia!

19.  You can beat them in a NERTZ card game any day so make sure you make them do ridiculous things for losing.

20.  They have hearts of gold and are great Godly girls!!

 

I am so thankful for their help with our staff and Bible camps and everything else.  We were able to accomplish so much this month and the interns were the reason why!  I had so much fun seeing the girls work in new environments and trust the Lord on a daily basis.  I loved watching the Lord's work be done through them.  They were calm and patient when needed and were willing to work so hard. 

To our 2014 summer interns, you guys did GREAT!  You have no idea how much God used you this past month and how thankful we are.  God has a great plan for each of your lives and has uniquely made you, just hold on and keep going after Him! We love you and Arise Africa is always here for you! Don't be a stranger!

Oh yea and I've paid for Millie/Annie the dog to be shipped to America, who wants her?!

In Him,

Alissa

 

Monday
Jun302014

Final Words from your favorite interns

Hey y’all!

 

Wow, we cannot believe that the end of the month is here! It’s been an incredible month and it is very bittersweet to say goodbye to the country and people we love so much. We have experienced and learned lessons that we will never forget. Thank you to everyone who supports Arise Africa; whether it’s through the child sponsorship program or other ways, we have gotten to see firsthand the impact Arise is making here in Zambia. We have seen God work in powerful ways and have experienced His abundant faithfulness during our time here. As this is our last blog post, here are a couple of lists that we wanted to pass on to our favorite audience!

 

Funniest moments of the month:

-Paying our security guard, Remi, to fill up water balloons for bible camp

-When Ellen and Hailey lost a bet and had to go across the cold pool in a raft

-Laine telling a little boy she likes his pants… which means underwear in Africa… oops!

-Eating the entire supply of guacamole at Taco Hut

-Successfully putting all 5 interns in hammocks in one tree

-Hailey touching the electric fence

 

Things the 2015 Interns should do to prepare:

-Learn how to text on a Nokia 80’s phone

-Accept taking cold showers

-Start liking Coke

-Accept limited resources in the grocery stores

-Don’t bother bringing a watch, you’re on Zambian time

-Hope you like eggs…

-To prepare for your first mini bus experience

a. don’t shower for a week

b. cram yourself in a cardboard box

c. blast reggae

-Find the dullest knife you can and start cutting vegetables with it

-Start stirring cement to get used to stirring nshima

-Get used to turning down marriage proposals

-When someone tells you the price of something immediately start bargaining from half that price

-DON’T IGNORE ALISSA’S EMAILS ABOUT WINTER WEATHER. IT IS REAL.

-Avoid eye contact with homeless men at your car window

-Download the sound of a rooster and listen to it every hour of the day

-Look up the word “muzungu”…. that’s your new name

 

Thank you so much for all of your prayers! In the wise words of one of our favorite movies, aka Frozen: “OKaaaayyy bye”.

The Summer 2014 Interns

Sunday
Jun292014

Last Week as Interns

Howdy y’all!

 

We have been busy over here in Zambia! This past week we went to several different ministries all over the city. We loved the chance we had to see how these organizations impact the people in this city!

 

This past Tuesday we went to Cure Hospital, a worldwide organization that provides first world healthcare to third world countries. They gave us a tour and then we spent the rest of the morning coloring pictures with kids who were currently inpatients. That afternoon we went to Mother Teresa’s, a local orphanage here in Lusaka. We played with some precious little kids who showed us what it looks like to love selflessly. This visit impacted all of us a ton and our hearts broke for the kids who are in desperate need of homes here.

 

Wednesday, we headed back to Grace and Destiny schools to finish up sponsorship letters and say our goodbyes to the kids. A few of us had the opportunity to visit the families of some of the kids in the sponsorship program. They were so genuine and thankful for what Arise is doing for their kids, but most importantly, how the Lord is using Arise to change hearts.

 

Friday morning, we attended our last staff meeting here in Lusaka. It was bittersweet, as we had to say our goodbyes to a lot of the Arise staff. They have taught us so much about what it looks like to love well and serve with our whole hearts. They have shown us how to be generous with our time and patient with people, no matter the situation. The impact they have made on us will not be soon forgotten and we are returning to the States with full hearts.

Lastly, Friday night we gave the house mom’s at the Arise Home a break and spent the night at the home with the kids. We played games, cooked dinner, help them finish their sponsorship letters, popped popcorn, and watched their favorite movie, Spiderman. We loved getting to hang out with them and see their day-to-day lives.

 

 

It is crazy to think that we are leaving here in only a few short days. We are so thankful for our time here so far and know that the Lord still has much to teach us with our time left.

 

In Him,

The Interns

Tuesday
Jun242014

Week 3 update

Hey everyone!

It has been a while since we have blogged and we are so sorry! We have been busy here in Lusaka and haven’t had much time to put pen to paper….or in this case, hands to keys.

Last week we worked in the two different schools that Arise partners with, helping all the children in the sponsorship program write letters back to their sponsors. We spent our days at Grace School and Destiny School chopping vegetables, serving lunch, writing letters with kids, and experiencing true Zambian transportation via the mini bus system. Picture a crowded, packed van driven by a crazy New York taxi driver. It was awesome. 

We loved getting a chance to see firsthand the impact that the child sponsorship program makes in the lives of kids here in Lusaka. Witnessing kids reading letters written to them by their sponsors brought smiles to our faces as we realized how important and meaningful this program is to these communities. Not to mention, we loved the opportunity we had to get to know the kids in the schools as well as the Arise staff. They have an incredible amount of joy and hope, and the kids are so grateful for even a chance to attend school. We have all learned a lot from them and know that the Lord is doing big things in both Grace School and Destiny School.

 

We ended the week sorting out all the donation items that we brought over here from the States. We were able to give not only both schools clothes and other items, but we also donated to Mother Teresa’s (an orphanage here in Lusaka), Macdonald’s Farm (a family who has taken in thirty one street boys), and a reading program in Lusaka West. The Lord used these donations to answer prayers and He was very evident in the way that He met the specific needs of these ministries.

It is crazy to think that our time is drawing closer to an end here in Zambia. We ask that you all be praying for our last week here; that we would seek to serve the people we come in contact with well and that the Lord continues to work in their lives as well as our own. Be praying for open hearts and for eyes to see the needs more clearly over the course of this week. We are excited and expectant for what the Lord will do!

 

In Him,

The Interns

Saturday
Jun142014

Kids Camp Day 5

Hi everyone! 

 

Yesterday was the last day of camp at Appleseed school. We spent the day playing games, launching water balloons, running through an obstacle course, and reflecting on all that the Lord did this past week.

 

We ended the day exchanging goodbyes with our new Zambian friends and praying for the students at Appleseed. There were lots of tears on both sides.

 

As we reflect on our week, God did some incredible work in the hearts of the students and volunteers alike. He was abundantly faithful through language barriers and hardened hearts. We had a lot of kids come to know him this week at camp and learn more about his character.

 

Continue to be praying for the kids at Appleseed; that they would know the love and mercy of the Lord and that he will continue to soften hearts and draw those kids closer to him. Be praying also for our American friends who, after spending the weekend at Victoria Falls, will be traveling back to the States. Pray for safe flights and that they would continue to be impacted and encouraged from their week spent here in Zambia.

 

We, as the interns, now look forward to the next couple of weeks we have left here in Zambia! Be praying for us and that we would seek to glorify the Lord in all that we do and that he would continue to use us.

 

In Him,

 

The Interns