I’ve finally got round to writing a wee blog. We’ve been here for 2 weeks now, hard to believe! It’s been a really challenging and amazing time. We touched down in Dakar on an unbelievably humid night. We got through the arrivals after less than an hour, giving our white immigration forms to a sleepy looking official wearing traditional dress. As soon as we saw the baggage belt we found ourselves surrounded by pushy porters, who hauled our suitcases onto trolleys and politely demanded money. James quickly handed over a 10,000 FCFA note, about £12, which they began to argue over. As soon as we left the terminal we met Brett Molter and Simon, and were surrounded by guys wanting to carry stuff (at a small price of course). Once we got our stuff into the van we set off for the school, through long slow traffic jams going out of the city. The journey to BCS took about an hour and a half.
The school is a boarding school, purpose built on a large site next to a mango plantation. The land around is flat and there are also lots of huge baobabs. It is owned WEC (Worldwide Evangelisations for Christ) and I’m working there as a short term WEC ‘Trekker’ for my gap year. There are over 90 pupils and their parents work all over West Africa, with over 20 different missions. The school is really vital to the work of God in West Africa, because without it many ‘MKs’ (missionary kids) wouldn’t be able to obtain suitable qualifications for universities, and this would mean they or their whole families would have to leave Africa in order for them to study at home. So it is effectively keeping missionaries out here. The pupils hail from loads of different countries, such as Brazil, Holland, Germany, the USA, South Korea, Nigeria, France and the UK. Most kids speak at least one other language besides their mother tongue. The school operates in English and there are some classes provided in German, Dutch, Portuguese, and Korean. This is so that pupils who speak these languages in their home country won’t forget them while living in an English-speaking school within a French-speaking country.
What I'm doing mostly is being a dorm helper in Eagle Dorm, which is the dorm for the 7-11 year olds. I have to help them prepare meals, do devotions, games, and generally help out in supervising and looking after the kids. So far I'm really enjoying it, and it sometimes doesn't feel like work.
I'm also teaching Years 7-9 History, as well as being a classroom assistant in a primary class. This means my schedule is full up and I've always something to be at. Although it can be kind of exhausting at times, I know its worthwhile. I'm amazed at the missionary families who have worked for so many years in this difficult part of West Africa among many different people groups who are mostly Muslim and Animist, and not particularly open to Christianity.
Anyway I hope to update this blog now and again, so thanks for reading!
For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of self-control. - 2 Timothy