Monday, 25 February 2013
'Nothing will prepare you for the experience'
Six years at Gillespie's builds up to South Africa. Constant fundraisers throughout the year remind you of the importance of the project. However, no matter how many pictures, stories or video clips you see, nothing will prepare you for the experience of going yourself. You will have no idea of the difference the project makes until you are able to see it in person. Although I have seen videos of the greeting you get in the arrivals of Durban Airport, the intensity of their voices cannot be put across.
I always knew that the students at both Dloko and Zwelibanzi were far from privileged but taking a walk around the township truly showed how little some of these students came from, yet they come to school everyday in pristine uniforms, ready to learn and better their lives. The hope of becoming a doctor, a lawyer or a police officer drives them towards this. It is inspiring and it makes you realise how selfish you are every time you miss class because you can't be bothered.
It is personal stories that truly brings home the importance of the project. A man who was part of the project 10 years ago told us himself that without Gillespie's he wouldn't be where he is now. The gratitude that is both spoken and unspoken is overwhelming.