(re-posted from October 2012)
A lot happens on a Timbali payday. Yesterday was our first one since getting back from the USA.
It was a good day. Here’s a few highlights:
This is a new playground that was put up at the Care Point where we meet each week. I guess this doesn’t have a lot to do with payday, except that it was great to see these kids enjoying themselves when I drove up.
This is Kimberly dividing out this month’s supply of flax lignans for the Timbali women. The lignans are a natural supplement that is beneficial for those with the HIV virus, and we’re able to help supply it to quite a few of the women. Kimberly is here as an intern until December, and is staying in the little apartment attached to our house.
The little girl on the right is Xolile. Her mom, Lindiwe, is a widowed mother of 10 (plus a couple grandchildren), and while we were in the U.S. a visiting team was able to help build them a new house. I was excited to see Lindiwe and congratulate her–she’d been praying for a new house for quite a while and she was so excited about how she’d been blessed! Her whole family had been sleeping in 2 tiny little one room houses for years.
The ladies have started bringing little things to sell to each other on our paydays. Phumlile made a bunch of “ice blocks” (frozen kool-aid type stuff) to sell, which was a great idea since it was over 100 degrees that day. Others were selling candy, lotion, socks, etc. Phumlile’s glasses had broken right before we left for the U.S. and we were able to give her an advance that she’ll pay back over time to help buy new ones. I like her hip new frames. 🙂
Khosi had a baby boy just a few weeks before we came back. They must not be getting much sleep at night, because here they are taking a break from the popcorn sales for a little nap. 🙂
We also do a veggie market on paydays. It’s hard to get fresh produce out in the rural areas except for what they are able to grow themselves. We buy in bulk and sell to them at cost.
One of my main jobs on paydays is to collect the money the ladies put into their “savings.” This is my high-tech record sheet. 🙂 “Savings” is really just me holding on to their money for the year. But what’s really great is that in January right before school fees are due we are able to return their saving and match it!
About a year and half ago we were able to purchase 50 sewing machines for women who wanted to buy their own machine. Since then they have been making small payments each month and today Lungile and a few of the other women were the first ones to make their final payments!
At the end of the day I had a chance to sit down and talk with Gcebile. The picture below is Gcebile and her children in front of their house a couple years ago. The other pic is of her house after heavy winds last week.
Gcebile has endured a lot of hardships in her life. Now her family is sleeping outside while they try to figure out how they can build a new house. Pray for wisdom to know the best way (not just the easiest or the fastest) to help them in the short term and the long term with this need. Yesterday Gcebile said, “God is making a plan.” Please pray for Gcebile’s family.
And, that’s our payday. Good to be back.