As we are wrapping up day 11 of our adventure in Africa, I figured I should make a post about it; in case anyone missed it, I am in fact in Swaziland and will be making it my home for another six weeks. Having been at Boston University this past year, everyone around me was talking about internships they were applying for the upcoming summer. I knew I had always dreamt of spending time in Africa, but I also knew I really needed to get some experience doing an internship. I started exploring my options and thought of Anna Carmichael, co-founder of One Heart Africa, having known her from early church years. After some Facebook messaging and awkward phone interviews, before I knew it I was boarding a 15 hour flight with two other girls whom I had just met. We all wondered what we were getting ourselves into-no idea what our jobs would include, what our living situation was, or the food we would be eating. All we knew was that Anna liked to do 7 am workouts (needless to say we were afraid). But, I think I can speak for all of us when I say that as soon as we landed we were flooded with peace. Ryan and Anna welcomed us at the airport and the rest is history. Our group dynamic rocks, and even though we have had little to no Wi-Fi, many cold showers (or no showers at all), and unreliable electricity, we have been having the most amazing time (and we have also murdered a mouse with a Chaco).
One Heart Africa is a non profit organization built on sustainability. It’s mission is to educate, empower, and equip the locals of Swaziland. By providing the Swazis with jobs, they are helping to build a more sustainable way of life for the local community. It is such an inspiring and pure organization, and being able to see first hand the work of Anna and Ryan has been so eye opening. They are incredibly passionate about the country and it’s people, devoting their lives to giving back to them. I feel so blessed to be able to work one-on-one with them and the organization, along with two other amazing interns.
Living in the bush, aka rural Africa, has been such a learning experience, and being off the grid has shown me so much about myself as well. Finally slowing down and thinking about things other than my GPA revealed to me how blinded I have been as to what has been going on around me. God is doing so much work; I have been meeting missionaries, doctors, teachers, and entrepreneurs from all over the world. Hearing so many different accents and languages just sitting at a dinner table is so fascinating, and the fact that we have all managed to cross paths in Siteki, Swaziland is so awe inspiring. These people have become our friends, mentors, and family.
My own story has seemed to have been at a stand-still, I couldn’t see exactly what God was doing in my life and I felt like I had come to a halt. However, within less than a two-week period, I can already see in leagues how God has been infiltrating my thoughts, pulling my heart strings, and painting the beautiful picture of the next steps of my journey. I will be posting on One Heart Africa’s social media this next month so give them a like and a follow, and I will try my best to keep everyone up to date on my personal blog. So come along with me, off the grid, on this safari of an adventure, and maybe we will be able to see some elephants along the way.