Thursday, April 15, 2010


I've been going through lots of boxes, clearing stuff away in preparation for leaving South Africa in a few months. And yesterday I discovered that I've kept nearly every card, letter, or postcard sent to me here over the past couple years. It was so much fun to look through these and be reminded of how many people "back home" are praying for and encouraging me from afar. So thank you to everyone who's sent something to me via "real" mail!

Represented heavily in this picture are the Palmers, who regularly have their Sunday school class and Awana group draw pictures and write cards for me, and of course my best friend Heather, who (when she's not pregnant and forgetful) sends me scads of hilarious postcards. Another favorite pictured in this pile is a card I received just before coming here in 2008, from Kirsten Graham--age 9 at the time, if my math isn't off. The P.S. to her message says: "There is a scary frog on your desk!" This is a reference to something I had on my desk in the church office, which she used to comment on frequently, saying he looked mad. It was a turtle, but still. I can't believe she remembered (I haven't worked there since 2003) and I love that she commented on it in the card. :)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Kids with Cameras

My good friend Sarah Woolley has been teaching an 8-week photography class for kids in Soshanguve for the past couple months. She's using her talent for photography to teach these kids to look a little differently at their world, and to capture it on film.

Most of these kids are daughters and sons of my good friends in Soshanguve. Over the past three years, I've played hide and seek with them, sat with them on my lap, let them do my hair, celebrated their birthdays, and they've pulled me out into African dance circles several times (usually against my will, but who can say no when Precious tells you to dance?!). A couple of them frequently ask to borrow my camera when I'm out in Sosh, and I get home to find all kinds of pictures of their friends and their neighborhood.

It's been exciting to see these kids have the opportunity to learn more about photography and get their own disposable cameras to experiment with. I love seeing the kids' excitement--most times I've gone out to Sosh in the past months, I've seen these kids using their fingers to frame potential shots.

Sarah wrote a post about the project here, and I encourage you to check it out! She gives a short bio on each kid, so you can get to know them a little bit. I would so appreciate your prayers and support as Sarah finishes up this class and the kids have the opportunity to display their work at an art show in Soshanguve.

If you'd like to make a donation of any amount toward this project, you can click here. This link will take you directly to the support section of CRM's website, where you can make a donation to the "Kids with Cameras" project.

Your financial support goes toward supplies for the class, including:
  • Disposable cameras for practice and assignments
  • Film developing: prints and digital copies on CD
  • Snacks for each class
  • Journals, pens, posterboard, and other supplies
The cost for the class in Soshanguve breaks down to $100 per child. If you'd like to make a $100 donation to sponsor a specific child, please email Sarah by clicking here to let her know which child you’d like to sponsor. Again, to make the donation, click here. Donations are tax-deductible and work just like any other CRM donation. Thank you!