After being enclosed for months in St. Joseph CYCC because of the Corona virus, the children needed a change of environment.
Since the beginning of the lockdown in March, all the children were kept within the premises of the home in order to prevent the risk of transmission of the corona virus. This has been a long time where they couldn’t go out. It lead the children to calling a meeting to address how they feel about this issue. They all expressed how tired they are of being locked up. “We aren’t going to school anymore, visitors aren’t allowed in the property anymore and it feels like prison”, exclaimed the older kids. The social worker suggested that they could maybe go hiking in Mbongolwane or have an outing to Eshowe. However the children had something bigger in mind and proposed to do something different from what they’ve done before. So they requested to go somewhere far and for a few days.
Sr. Assumpta made contact with Mr. Mbongiseni, owner of St. Anthony CYCC to ask to make use of the therapeutic house which is called Our Heaven for a couple of days. All the necessary arrangements were made. Fifteen children, three careworkers, the social worker, centre manager and the homeschooling teachers traveled to Newcastle for their getaway trip.
The time spent there was very exciting. The children had a complete different routine. They got up later than usual, helped with cleaning and preparing of meals and had a lot of fun playing indigenous games outside together with the adults. On the night before they returned home they had a braai and a talk from Mr. Mbongiseni. He commended the children for taking initiative to express how they felt and proposing what they would like to do. He also encouraged them to always strive to be the best they can be and make positive changes in their lives.
When the older ones returned from Our Heaven the toddlers also embarked to Eshowe convent for their outing. They played soccer and other fun games. Afterwards they had a picnic on the grass and ate their favourite, KFC and ice-cream. These few days were much needed for the children to get fresh air in a different setting. They all participated and well very well behaved throughout both trips. We are very proud of them for taking the lead.
Text by: Sr. Maria Machi
Photos by: Daniel Scharnagl