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Hello, South Africa!

Ben Robinson spent eight weeks after Easter this year serving an Envision placement in South Africa. These are his memories.

On 12 April of this year I boarded a plane to South Africa and began my two month Envision Placement in Welkom. I spent Monday to Friday working at Morning Star, the day centre for children with HIV/AIDS. While there I spent my time doing DIY jobs around the site, playing with the kids, leading morning Bible devotions, working alongside a fantastic team of workers and much more. I really enjoyed being ‘Teacher Ben’ and I learnt so much while there. I’m sorely missing all the wonderful kids and the amazing team.

I also spent two afternoons a week working alongside the pastor of Welkom Baptist Church, Joshua Bolaji. We went to a place called Reahola where, through coaching football and setting up teams, we were able to share the gospel with the kids and young people who live there. I was able to share with them a bit about my background and my testimony, and I shared the message of the gospel as well. I love football and it was great to be able to use it as a way into their lives, to share the awesome news of our salvation through Christ. They were all better than me by a mile and it was a lot of fun!

As well as working at Morning Star and coaching in Reahola, I also worked to support the work of Welkom Baptist Church. I went into two different schools to teach Bible sessions with forty high school students. I led games at the Friday night youth club and taught the Bible in the Friday night youth group and the Sunday school. I also attended two weekly Bible studies, led some Sunday morning services and had the opportunity to play guitar as part of Sunday morning worship.

Of course, while I was in South Africa I didn’t just spend all my time working. There were a few touristy things to really enjoy: lion parks, African street markets, quad-biking and a couple of safaris. South Africa is such a beautiful country. The people I met were wonderful and the food was fantastic as well!

The whole experience was simply awesome and I would definitely recommend it to anyone. It was very tiring, both mentally and physically, but it was an exceptionally rewarding experience.  I was challenged and I learnt so much from so many different people, and to see with my own eyes what a huge God we serve was amazing! God is an international God whose good news is for everyone. I do have to admit that every so often I keep checking online to see the price of flights back to South Africa but I have to trust in God’s plan for my life.

I am so thankful to everyone who made this possible, especially the team at GBM who supported me and guided me through the process, and I thank everyone that prayed for me while I was out there! God sustained me and comforted me in so many ways and it was a privilege to serve in this way.

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