A graduation and a sad farewell :(

Photo of the day!!

Photo of the day!!

Today was our last day together…and from the moment we woke up it was in the back of our minds…and no one wanted to leave! But there will still an amazing day in front of us to look forward too. Today was all about spending time with the kids and finishing off those little things around the crèche. What we didn’t expect when we arrived, was the big colourful circus-like tent in the yard of the crèche! It turns out, it was graduation day for the kids…you know what that meant? Teeny tiny graduation robes and hats! Quite possibly the cutest thing any one of us has ever seen. Each student got their own certificate and there was also a big feast to celebrate. Unfortunately we couldn’t stay for the whole thing, but we got to help all the teachers and mothers prepare the big feast, help around the crèche and importantly, spend as much time with the kids as possible. They were all wearing their finest as we watched they play in the dirt and play rough…I guess kids are the same anywhere in the world!

Having team led before in Cambodia, where we also work with kids, I knew it was going to be a tough goodbye today as the volunteers had made such strong bonds with the kids. I deliberately left extra time to say goodbye to the kids and as we were about to get into our safari truck for the last time, all the kids emerged from inside wearing their adorable graduation clothes and were waving vigorously goodbye! To say there weren’t a few tears in the car ride home would be lying.

One of the certificates of the children

One of the certificates of the children

The graduation tent!

The graduation tent!

Elli playing with the kids...we call this one "mr tickles!"

Elli playing with the kids…we call this one “mr tickles!”

Loving life

Loving life

Our helper and driver Richard! We are all going to miss him!

Our helper and driver Richard! We are all going to miss him!

Some of the kids playing with the toys...jump rope!

Some of the kids playing with the toys…jump rope!

The soup kitchen being fitted out with cookers and the volunteers helping with the feast :)

The soup kitchen being fitted out with cookers and the volunteers helping with the feast 🙂

The amazing pictures on the walls :)

The amazing pictures on the walls 🙂

All of our hand prints ad signatures

All of our hand prints ad signatures

A storms brewing

A storms brewing

Some adorable graduates

Some adorable graduates

Ready to graduate!!

Ready to graduate!!

It has been such a magical experience out here, learning about other cultures, opening our minds to the world, seeing some incredible animals and importantly meeting some of the most amazing people you will ever meet in your life. The time has gone so quickly but it has certainly been an adventure!

As half of the group continued onto Durban to fly home and the other half are extending onto other programs, the goodbye was tearful and emotional. Its goodbye for now, but I can guarantee not forever ladies. The experiences shared and the friendships made on this program will last a lifetime. Thankyou for everyone at home reading the blogs, as for me;

Until our paths cross again
~ Jess

emotional and tearful farewells :(

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