Yesterday a homeless woman who had been out in the rain all night arrived at a rehab center together with her son. They were wet and hungry, but no doubt beautiful humans underneath and most importantly – humans daring to ask for help. The rehab center sent the woman to Little Angels, pleading with Liezel to help her son. Of course, Liezel could not refuse.
In the midst of the pouring rain the teachers were running back and forth to houses in the area, gathering hot water as there is no electricity at Little Angels. They managed to wash the boy, get him into some clean clothes and feed him two bowls of food. He fell asleep shortly after and slept for hours. One of the teachers, Randy, said it was a shame I was not there, because I would have cried seeing the transformation. And probably I would have.
The rehab center is helping the woman come off drugs and have found her a place to stay temporarily. Little Angels will feed and educate her son.
This is why I love working with Little Angels – they make a difference. In a community ridden with crime, HIV, drug misuse and prostitution they stand out by doing what’s right, even if it’s not always easy. They aren’t paid, they often have little left for food, clothes and electricity. Sometimes they cry. Sometimes they falter. But they never give up. The teachers at Little Angels have become my extended family. I wish I could give them healthy foods, warm clothes for winter and a constant supply of electricity and simply a break sometime to go somewhere and relax, away from what it means to live in a township (not least for Liezel as she has people knocking on her door at all hours, being the agony aunt of the entire community – the go to person for food, warmth, advice and hugs and for Stacey whose husband has just been diagnosed with cancer and who was the sole provider of the family). I can’t. Not right now. But I know that we have each other – we have each other’s support, joy and laughter. More than anything we have success stories to warm our hearts and kids to hug us on a rainy day. We have what few will experience – the unconditional love of hundreds of children who interact with us. We are very blessed.