Grace Children's Home - Vavuniya

Matt Marshall :: Saturday 13th March 2010 :: This Story

I've spent the last few days in Vavuniya at the Grace Children's home. Vavuniya is a less priviledged area of the country and so I haven't had much opportunity to access the internet.

All the boys at Grace were a little shy at first, as I met them at study time, but the bouncy balls Maureen had sent for the boys went down a treat and we spent hours of my first night playing with them! At this point the boys were still calling me master which was strange to me given that I was there to play with them and not to take the authoritative role they are used to men taking. However yesterday they started calling me uncle in Tamil, which made me feel a lot more comfortable. Yesterday I had a chance to watch the boys doing their chores; watering the plants and sweeping up the leaves before they were allowed to play sports. As soon as the chores were done a group of grinning boys ran out to the grass with the parachute donated by Heatherside School last year; they had taken such good care of it and took great pride in showing me the games they like to play with it.

Yesterday evening I sat with the boys while they studied, and showed me the english phrases the knew, as they love to speak english and to hear me repeat the words back. I tried to learn to count to ten in Tamil in a similar way but I could only get as far as 8 before my accent became to funny for the boys. Tonight I think we are going to play cricket in the boys' free time and I have been invited to an hours prayers, which will no doubt be followed by a delicious meal provided by Mrs Nadrajah who has been a wonderful host. I think I'll have time for a couple hours more sleep before the boys get home from school...