A trip with donuts and muffins – humedica-staffer sweetens orphans’ day

by Ruth Bücker,  2009/09/22

The number of orphans in Southern Africa is appallingly high: in Zimbabwe, more than 1 Mio children already lost their parents due to AIDS. It also happens quite often that parents give their children away because they feel overwhelmed by the task of bringing them up.

When there are no relatives who can look after them, Sisters take care of the orphaned or abandoned girls and boys in orphanages and try to give these children, who have already suffered such heavy blows of fate, a new, loving home. During her work in Zimbabwe, humedica-coordinator Heidi Nicklin visited several orphanages and gave an unforgettable day to the children who thanked her with shining eyes.

In April, Heidi Nicklin flew to Zimbabwe together with Rosalyn Hoppe in order to work there for humedica. Apart from medical drugs and equipment for hospitals, the two women also visited orphanages to distribute gifts in kind donated by people in Germany, like clothes and toys. Heidi Nicklin additionally gave something special to the orphans by organizing a day trip for them.

The first orphanage Heidi visited was Rusape children’s home where she went in June, together with Sister Anu Rite, the local responsible for health care issues. After their parents’ death, 13 children, all of them under the age of six, are raised by Sisters, who take care of them, nurse them, educate them and give them a feeling of love and security.

Before the picnic at the artificial lake, Sister Anu Rite makes the children wash their hands. Foto: humedica / Heidi Nicklin

Time flew by with a game called “Hit the Pot” (a funny game that the little girls and boys had not known before) and other children’s games, a trip to the artificial lake and a picnic. Before going home, Heidi delighted the kids with a sweet surprise: donuts and muffins for all of them, which were devoured with glee.

I know it’s unhealthy, yet this is exactly what children love”, said the humedica-staffer, laughing. At the end of the day, Heidi had achieved what she had hoped and wished for: “The children were so happy. This has been a real success!”

A similarly special and joyous day was organized by the humedica-staffer for the children of Mount Mellary Children’s Home. Like Rusape orphanage, this home is led by Sisters who take care of the 22 children and youths age six and older with great love and commitment.
For the boys and girls, the day began very early. Filled with anticipation, their night ended at 3 o’clock in the morning when, out of excitement, they were not able to sleep any longer, as we were told by the director of the children’s home. Tired but excited they waited for Heidi.

Also for this day, she had thought of something special. The trip began with a visit to the Trout Beck Inn Hotel whose manager had allowed the children to spend a whole day on the hotel’s playground.
Apart from the slide, swing and jungle gym the children loved the horses grazing in the hotel’s park as well as the rowing boats.

Bottled drinks brought some additional joy to the children. Foto: humedica/ Heidi Nicklin

Before they returned to the children’s home, they enjoyed a picnic consisting of chicken, rice and bottle-drinks which also represented something special for the boys and girls: bottled lemonade drinks are expensive and cannot be afforded by the children’s homes. Therefore, the children were enthusiastic.

For the oldest of the girls living in Mount Mellary, the day contained another special event: the 22-year-old young woman handed over her application papers to the hotel manager in which she applied for an apprenticeship in the hotel trade. At this point, we would like to wish her God’s blessing and that the application will be successful!

For all of the children, the trips brought great fun and joy of living and provided a welcome change to their lives which are very sad at times. The humedica-staffer enjoyed the trips as much as the others: the joy and enthusiasm of the children and youths, their happy laughter and shining eyes evoked in her a feeling of joy that was worth all the efforts made.

For the needy children and youths, the children’s homes mean that they are given a new home and, apart from being provided with tangible goods like food, clothes and a bed, can experience love and care. Heartfelt thanks to Heidi Nicklin for her visits and trips with the orphans who, thanks to her commitment, have spent an unforgettable day.

humedica-staffer Heidi Nicklin (right) with Sister Anu Rite and the children of Rusape children’s home. Foto: humedica/ Heidi Nicklin

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