Playing in the Playground
Earlier this summer, I visited Maranatha Children Care's beautiful foster home facility in Port Elizabeth.
As most of the children were at school when I visited, we enjoyed a leisurely tour of the facilitites, which included a very large playground for children to play in, beautiful gardens (with a plot the children use to learn how to grow vegetables), and even a mini farm in the back!
I met their resident pigs, chickens, turkey, monkeys who've decided to make Maranatha their home (and occasionally steal fruit and deworming medicine -- hilarious), and a very sweet dog. The children of Maranatha are very fortunate indeed.
The children and youth here come from really disadvangtage backgrounds, often still dealing with past trauma, but you would never know from speaking to Harrison, or the rest of the staff for that matter; hope and positivity sing through the halls, through the gardens, and the vast open space of the children's playgrounds. Everyone was friendly and contributed to the very warm, welcoming atmosphere of the home.
In addition to seeing the foster home, I also learned about Maranatha's partnership with Protea primary school, which provides education to orphan children who have been referred to them through social services (and are often dealing with trauma). Harrison himself volunteers as a teacher here on some days; the synergy between Maranatha and Protea really benefits the children, as it offers a safe space for them to learn while in foster care.
What I'll most remember and cherish about this visit was meeting Harrison, Maranatha's project leader. Watching him interact with the young people in his care, seeing first-hand the personal commitment he has to improving their livelihoods was so endearing and inspiring.
There are so many amazing non-profits and social impact projects in the world, but the ones that really make a difference are the ones with the biggest hearts behind them; Harrison is one of those hearts.
A Beautiful Home for Maranatha's Children