Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Moving On Up

The young men in front of their newly renovated home 'The Potter's House' in Bulembu

In the middle of February we posted on the renovations a group of young men were doing on a house in Bulembu (Let Men Be Men). The home is a project geared towards transitioning young men above the age of 17 out of the BMS children’s homes and into a more independent lifestyle.

Four weeks have passed since the young men finished the renovations on the house and moved into their new home.

The newly completed kitchen where the boys share their daily meals

The boys painted the bible verse their house was named after, 'The Potter's House', on the wall in order to encourage them daily

The sitting area in the house where the boys can spend time studying or relaxing together

“I was about to turn 18 when I was asked if I was interested in moving into this home,” says Knowledge, one of the young men who lives in the new house. “I wanted to because I was living with a group of children and I didn’t enjoy it because the difference in our ages meant that we were all interested in very different things.”

Knowledge in his new room that he shares with his house brothers

Sizwe (18) was much more straightforward in his reasoning for moving into the home saying, “I didn’t feel well living with little kids because I find them annoying.”

While the boys are supervised by Berto, one of Bulembu Ministries Swaziland’s youth mentor, the four young men seem to be enjoying their independence.

“I wanted to move into the house because I wanted to learn how to become a man,” says Phiwo, 18. “I have more freedom and more responsibilities for how to be a leader. It’s good because I feel like I am treated like an adult and I have more freedom to go play soccer when I want or to go visit my friends.”

Phiwo sitting on the front steps of his new home after a satisfying day of working hard on the house

The house members are required to fulfill various responsibilities, which teach them to take ownership of their new home. “I am learning how to take responsibility for myself and for others here at home,” says Sizwe. “We do lots of chores – everything from cleaning the washroom and hallway, cooking, and keeping the garden clean. It’s really good living here because instead of having to take care of things we choose to take care of things.”

Sizwe is excited to be taking on the new responsibilities that come with adulthood such as gardening

The four residents of 'The Potter's House'

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