Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Lazarus Effect: New Life through a Blog

When we were designing the blog on the Ezomndeni Net, the password protected internet platform where Net Buddies and their mentors interact, we had no idea how it would be used. We were hopeful that the children would write about their lives. We were hoping they would practice their English and improve their grammar skills. We hoped that it would be a forum for exchanging ideas.

Our hopes were not only realized, but exceeded beyond our imaginings.

The children are giving us their rawest emotions, their deepest hurts, their highest hopes...their dreams.

I've shared some of the posts. I've shared some of the trust that the children are placing in the community of Infinite Family.

The words jump from the page in neon green, or rainbow fonts. They are punctuated with smiley faces.

The words are misspelled. Capitalization is ignored. The blogs stand stark and bold, quickly offered snapshots of their internal world.

We are given such a gift in these words. Amazingly tender reflections on their brothers and sisters and grandmothers. Sweeping wisdom in the span of four lines.

We are very blessed by these children. Not just us, the community of Infinite Family, but the world. What these children have to teach us from their perspective and experience of life is so profound. Life lived without a mother. Life lived in the grips of poverty and deprivation. But life still lived. Lived fully. Lived with hope. Life lived with threadbare shirts ironed crisply, symbols of their intention to succeed. Their spotless school uniforms ask with dignity that they be taken not just seriously, but demand that we see them in terms of their intentions for themselves.

And they intend BIG things. Pilots, doctors, lawyers. Social workers, actors, writers.

Their crisply ironed shirts and the well groomed hair are what they can control in their lives. It is their way to say to the world...I am. I am this boy here. This boy with the clean face and the completed homework. I am not to be defined by the hunger I experience. I am not to be defined by the virus that runs through my veins. I am who I choose to be.

And I choose life.

I choose a future.

The pain is knowing how little choice they may have.

We need to make choices available to them. The choice to live a life extended by affordable medication. The choice to be able to use their skills and talents and passions to impact their world...their families, their communities, their country.

I want these children to impact my life, my world, the future. I want these children to be the leaders of their country. I believe in these children. Passionately believe in them.

I want you to believe in them, too.

We make it easy. 30 minutes a week from the comfort of your own home. A computer, a webcam and a headset...the tools to change your life...change a child's whole world...and our world, too. And if you don't have the time, support someone who does by giving a donation to IF on our website:

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