The Timothy Project: Swaziland 2016 Final Update is finally here! Read below to see how Tim and Tiersa Rogers ministered to New Life Homes and utilized their Timothy Project request and the sport of soccer to touch the lives of the orphaned children.
After our wedding we traveled 18 hours from Seattle to Dubai and then another 8 hours to Durban, South Africa. After two months of craziness with our wedding and buying a home it was great to have a few days to slow down in Durban.
Life in Africa is not as smooth as in America. It was the winter season and our Saturday bus to Swaziland became a very small SUV on Monday. We were crammed with seven bags for 5 hours on our drive from Durban to Swaziland. We were fortunate to have no issues with our bags at customs and connected with our host and missionary friend once in Swaziland. We then had another two hour drive to “The Farm.”
New Life Homes is a facility for orphaned and abandoned children living in Swaziland. On the New Life Homes property there is a working farm and a school for the children. There are 40 orphans living in four houses with a host mom that takes care of the children. The farm sells produce, chickens, eggs and many other products to the community and uses those funds to help support 80 percent of the needs of the school and orphans living there.
We ended up spending five days ministering to the 40 orphans and another 40 children that come to the school from the local community. During the days Tiersa read stories to the children and helped in the classrooms. She reconnected with the teachers she trained and many of her former students.
The school has preschool through grade 7 and some of the children at New Life Homes also go to the local high school. During free time children are constantly playing soccer, even in their school uniforms. Rocks for goals and balls half flat don’t stop them from playing.
The older boys trade times with the girls so they can use the playground space for soccer. I asked why and was told by one of the teachers that the boys didn’t want to play with the girls because some of the kids from the community would tease the boys.
We used the afternoons to do soccer clinics. Tuesday we distributed the soccer kits. Wed-Friday we held two separate clinics each day. One clinic for ages 5-10 and the other for ages 10-16. Each clinic consisted of a small video from Athletes in Action provided by CrossTraining. We then had the children work on their skills and we played games.
The older children played each day a small actual game after our clinic on the dirt field on the edge of The Farm. Saturday, we held an official game. Team Rapids took on Team TC United as these were the only kits we had that worked for each team.
I was surprised at the skills of both the boys and the girls. Technically, I tried to do some instruction as it was obvious that they have not received direct coaching on specific skills. One of the neatest things was seeing the kids wearing the gear around the farm during the free time. It was like they were royalty. Some of the little ones didn’t have socks but had their boots on and their jerseys and wore them like they were going to a wedding.
Overall we felt our time was encouraging to the workers and children at New Life Homes. The balls, boots and equipment were cherished. Tommy, our host missionary, commented that just us visiting, spending time playing soccer, reading a story, or showing a movie with popcorn is just so special to each of the children. It really lifted everyone’s spirits.
To see additional photos check out our FaceBook Page.
Timothy Project: Swaziland 2016 Equipment Fulfillment
Boots (Cleats) 20 (Size 7-12)
10 One World Play Balls
If you would like to make a contribution to future projects like this please note (Timothy Project) in your donation or use the Donate Now link to make a secure PayPal donation. Your financial gift will help provide additional equipment, sponsor a missionary or organization in an outreach effort, and to cover associated costs of providing bibles, soccer equipment, and other outreach tools locally and around the world!