by Jonathan Bridges, Sustainability Coordinator Things have been unusually quiet around the office/Drop-in Center for the past couple of months . . .
Many transitions were made in September: transitions to school, transitions away from the streets, and transitions into homes. This is the calm after the storm, so to speak. After the busy summer programs, this is a time for the staff to recharge and reorganize to get ready for the next group of street children.
The staff is busy now with other tasks. For the past couple of months they have been doing extra street visitation to build relationships with a new group of street kids, which will start coming to the Drop-in Center around the beginning of the year. There is also the job of keeping up with schools. They monitor the progress of over 150 beneficiaries to make sure that school fees are paid and attendance and grades are kept up.
This is also a good time to focus on the bigger picture. Nega and Taramaj traveled to Chencha to spend some time with the staff of the Kota Ganate Agriculture Project. They worked with our farm management team to develop systems for reporting and accountability. They met with local officials to work out some issues with the land. They also arranged some training for the KG staff about the business side of agriculture.
It’s so quiet here today. A group of kids came in to eat lunch and then they were off to school again. It seems strange and unnatural, but it is so necessary. Working with street children is overwhelming. Nega describes it as the hardest thing he’s ever done and he’s had some hard jobs. He has coordinated a sports ministry program among over 1000 churches in southern Ethiopia and he’s managed 60 evangelists along the remote Kenya border. Both pale in comparison to ministering to just one street child. To have a short break each year is essential to keep Onesimus running smoothly and moving forward.