First day of placement

Most of the team were feeling nervous about the first day as we didn’t know what to expect in terms of staff or premises or content. In the morning, before being taken to our individual crèches, we did a daily reflection, which was about God being our strength through good and challenging times, and prayed as a group. Then I briefed the team about their role in the crèche and that during the first week they will be mainly building relationships with the staff and observing. We got picked up at 7.30am to be taken to our crèches.

I had split my team into pairs, where there was one SA volunteer and one UK one together. As we were going to be involved in 5 crèches, one pair got the new crèche whereas the other two pairs had two crèches each. Today, I went with the pair helping the new crèche (Noah).

Swerving through traffic, the other were dropped off. However, when it came to us, the driver didn’t know where we were going so trusty Google Maps came to the rescue. Noah crèche was on the first floor in a small shopping building. When we walked through the doors, we were welcomed by one of the teachers, who showed us around. The children were sitting on the floor in one room, some eating porridge; others not really doing much. As we entered the room, all the kids were shy (there was about 20 of them from the age of 2-7). We were later told that the older kids hadn’t started back at school. We sat on the floor with them when the owner walked in.

For the rest of the morning, there was no structure so we ended up leading a lots of games and songs like ‘What’s the time Mr Wolf?’, ‘Head, shoulders, knees and toes’, ‘Duck, duck, goose’ and the ‘Hokey, cokey’. Later, we found out that the term doesn’t start properly until February so there was no formal lessons or classes. We stayed in the crèche until nap time, which was at about 12.15, when we managed to have a good conversation with the owner. It is encouraging to hear that she wanted to get to And is willing to improve. The crèche has only been going for two years and she has made amazing improvements already. There are so many positives here but there are still a few things to work on.

After being picked up slightly late, we chatted amongst the team about our experiences at the crèche, which seemed very diversity. Luckily for me, I get to observe and be part of all the crèches. Once we had some lunch, we settled down doing some paperwork about the positive and things to improve of the crèche each pair was working in. Plus, I had to do general admin and organisation.

First day over and the nerves of entering somewhere new, out of our comfort zones.

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