Thursday January 22nd ~ Swaziland school visit
Swaziland has been greatly effected by HIV/AIDS as well as Tuberculosis.
“Swaziland has the highest HIV infection rate in the world (25.8% of all adults; more in other reports) and a life expectancy of 50 years. From another perspective, the last available World Health Organization data in 2002 shows that 64% of all deaths in the country were caused by HIV/AIDS” ~ Wikipedia
Today our highlighted stop was a visit to a local school whose children are being raised in an impoverished single parent household. Gate 1 has a foundation that “adopts” a school in need and with regular visits and contributions is making a difference in the lives of some very needy children.
We stopped at a grocery store on our way to the school and stocked up on some highly nutritious items to help provide some meals for the children.
Upon our arrival, Simon introduced us, the children sang a few songs and then we had the opportunity to simply interact with them.
A short visit to a glass factory followed.
In the afternoon we reversed the previous days process and crossed the border once again, this time from Swaziland into the northern portion of South Africa en route to our overnight stop in Hazyview.
Gratitude Moment: Today I am grateful for the generosity of my fellow travelers. Within a minute our small group dug into their pockets and collectively came up with the needed $400 to complete construction on one of the school rooms.
Sounds like an amazing experience Joanne, interacting with the children and being able to do something that would help the community as well. We visited Swaziland about 18 years ago as part of a South Africa trip and were really moved by the whole day, it was my trip highlight. I remember the children being intrigued with our camera too – I think we may have visited the same glass factory!! Really enjoying all these latest posts.
The kids were beautiful. Not only were they excited to see their pictures, but they wanted to take some pictures as well. I handed over my camera, tried to explain how to use it, but the results were not spectacular. I think they had fun though. I’m glad you are enjoying the posts. I have SO MUCH MORE to share…
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Looking forward to reading lots more!! Those blue skies and gorgeous scenes are a great way to brighten up our very dull (and cold) January!
I usually forget to click the “like” button, but I remembered this time.
Hi Tim and Joanne,
I’m thoroughly enjoying your trip to South Africa so much that I’m going to put this Continent on my bucket list. Are you taking the small group trip with Gate1.?
Hi Barb, the Gate 1 trip was not the small group. We had 31 in our group. It was the 12 day classic South Africa. Part of our group did extend to go up to Victoria Falls, but the additional cost for the 16 day trip with Gate 1, I thought was over priced. We are doing that portion of our trip with another group. I will post more details about it as we proceed.
I am doing the 12 classic South Africa but also agree that Victoria Falls add on is expensive. What did you do for your Victoria Falls add-on trip??? Thanks
Hi Pam, we had a private group that a friend of ours coordinated for us. It was less expensive, but had some issues. I highly recommend seeing Victoria Falls though and I know that Gate 1 does a great job.