So I just wanted to tell you all a little story about a program that I stumbled into helping out with in May. The pastor of my little church down the street from my house called me and asked for me to come to the church on a Saturday to come take pictures of a program for kids. He didn’t really elaborate, but I had some time and so I headed down there that Saturday morning. When I arrived, there were tons of kids hanging out, more than usually attend. There we 4 or 5 boxes on the stage, which said “operation Christmas child” on them. Then I started to talk to the pastor, and found out that these were boxes from the states that an organization called “Samaritan’s purse” had sent, and that there was a representative coming from Tana to help distribute the presents and she needed someone to take pictures (which was where I came in).
So a few minutes later, the two women arrived from Tana to help distribute and we got underway. The pastor introduced me and as soon as I said “nice to meet you” in Malagasy she said “Peace Corps?” Haha. Then a few minutes later she even corrected herself saying numbers in French (which actually I am pretty good at because gasy people use them all the time) and repeated them in gasy. I love people like that.
Anyway, each kid got a wrapped shoebox for themselves, and we took a few pictures of them all together before they opened them. Then, the kids started cautiously tearing into their boxes of goodies. The smiles, the excitement, the shock, all completely priceless. Some of the younger kids were so shocked that they got a whole box to themselves. I wandered around trying to discreetly take pictures (because if they realized I was taking a picture they stopped smiling and started posing. The kids got things like candy, toothpaste, toothbrushes, mouthwash (that they had to ask me what it was for), small toys and balls, play-doh (which they thought might be yogurt since it came in the same kind of container, so I had to stop them from eating it haha).
The pure joy on the faces of those kids was one of the best things I’ve seen in this country, and I just wanted to share it with all of you.