To think, I arrived feeling unwell due to a very annoying headache, but once I met the kids and started to sing and play with them, every type of ache, pain and sickness left!
Touring the lovely missionary home was one of the nicest first experiences. Kingdom Care occupies about 30 young kids and 9 staff. These kids are filled with so much life and overflowing with fun and banter! Their smiles cannot be contained regardless of their situation, or physical implications.
I had so much fun hanging outside with the young ones, carrying the cuties on my back, having them cling to my arms and even discovering some on my legs. In their eyes a free limb is free license to grab onto me and play. It was hilarious having them run up to us in an attempt to do back flips off of us. It worked very well for a few of the smaller children.......but here comes Sarah an 8 stone bundle joy that still believes she weighs 3 as she charged at me saying "oya I'm coming to you!"
I cheekily encouraged her to run to Carlene (another volunteer) who wasn't paying attention and alarmingly found Sarah running at her full speed. They managed to get through the flip! Not as gracefully but they still did it! And that's what counts "Yay go Sarah".
After this we had a meeting with the owner Mark and wow what a purposeful meeting it was. I began to increasingly understand why I was placed here and how God had orchestrated for me to be positioned here in Ghana.
It was beautiful seeing the love they had for Christ and also provided the chance to meet Pastor James who also stays there.
They gave us a back story explaining how this place was not simply an orphanage but how it was planted with a Christian vision by a missionary. The home accepts all children and refuses to restrict it to orphans, accepting young people who have parents but for one reason or another are unable to live with them.
The missionary decided to plant this place because he recognised the importance of the body of Christ helping to meet the needs of the poor. Christians now a days are not doing this as much as they should, however this is what Jesus did wherever He went! I'm sure you know that at this point I had the biggest smile on my face, gleaming with joy I nearly laughed! My spirit was jumping!!! What are the odds that I would end up in a place that loves God and is devoted to Jesus like this... that's right it's not a coincidence, it's Gods divine orchestration! This place is all about acceptance, freely giving these children unconditional love that we have freely received from Jesus. This is in hope that they will also grow up to give others the same unconditional love.
They asked myself and the two other volunteers our religious status which we had to fill out via a data form. I knew this would be interesting. They were so happy I was born again! I couldn't contain my love for the Lord! I just adore Him and sounded like a happy child exclaiming "yayyyyy" for Jesus. I felt at home. The smile on their faces and their excitement didn't come from religious traditions but from a place of intimacy with Christ that they had in their hearts for him.
One of the other volunteers didn't know what religion she was but I know she's going to meet with Jesus even within the short 4 days God has placed her here. This began with the opportunity I had to take all of the volunteers on Sunday to a church in Ghana! One by one they all agreed! I had met a friend named Tobi via twitter )who was friends with a close friend Emmanuel) that was willing to tell me all about his wonderful church Empowerment Worship Centre! We went and the service was amazing, Pastor Danso preached a phenomenal word at the church that I would advise anyone to visit!!!!
So anyways back to the day 1! In the placement house.
Following the meeting, Mark (the owner) took us to a room with all 32 kids where we were able to introduce ourselves. These kids were full of banter! They asked us how many weeks we were staying and stared at us in shock shouted "booo....oooo...no" when they found out that one of the volunteers was only staying for a week. Now came my turn, as I said I was staying for 4 weeks they began clapping cheering and smiling! (You can really see the love these kids have and how important it is to spend time with them. Thank God for my bestie Nia - Cerise, I was only going to go to Ghana for 2 weeks but she encouraged me to go for a month! From that moment I knew that this was going to be interesting and completely fulfilling experience. They asked us each what we love to do, I said I love to sing! As I said it I saw smiles break out among the older children as singing was their favourite activity.
Once you tell people you can sing ! That's it, people demand to hear you right there and then! And these kids were exactly the same. Normally I shy away from singing when people order me to sing on the spot. But lately I'm beginning to realise that this gift of singing is to be used to glorify GOD and when I'm asked to do it, it's a way I can really praise him and encourage others to do so, even if they don't believe in God. My gift to sing is to usher people into the presence of God so that beleivers and even unbelievers feel His touch on their hearts. After I sang the melody of Casting Crowns by Nathanial bassey they were cheering and shouting with joy! The owner was so happy I sang a gospel song! I was just happy because I was able to serve God in this way.
After we all introduced ourselves and said our favourite things the kids seemed to draw nearer to us! Clinging to us constantly and asking me to sing! It was so fun! As myself and a few of the older girls searched through a list of songs trying to find out which songs we both knew. The young ladies were astounded at the fact I knew a lot of songs they knew! They couldn't believe a black American knows these African songs hahaha.
I know your probably reading this and thinking black American? Since when?
Lol. Well that's what they called me! Black America.....Black USA.... Hahahah I laugh and chuckle.
After trying to explain that I live in the UK, that I was born there and grew up there despite my ethnicity being Nigerian they finally understood. As 9:00pm hit, it was time for bed, however putting them to sleep was a different story. Quite frankly it was a military exercise; kids were running up and down, bed sheets flying, kids eating whilst us 4 outnumbered volunteers shouted "go to bed, come on let's go.... no you don't sleep in this room do you Sarah?
Come on let's go." Finally after this hilarious mission we got them in! Lights off!
What a glorious first day it was!
Stay tuned for my Ghana series of blogs ❤️
Volunteer organisation : IVHQ