First Time in a Township

We did our first bit of volunteering today and while it was an amazing experience it felt sort of like a notch on the tourist trail. It was my first time in a township and I’m really struggling to get my head around the concept of them. It sort of seems like someone clumped all the poor people together, said, “Live here, it’s not going to get any better, so make the best of it.” and left. Fortunately, they have definitely made the best of it and it’s slowly getting better. Other than the fact that everyone lives in corrugated sheet metal shacks, it’s sort of a thriving community. There’s a soccer team and school and everyone looks out for each other, kind of like North Van. Plus, the South African government has pledged to build a house for every family that doesn’t have one and while they are years behind, there is some good stuff that’s starting to happen. I did feel like kind of a moron though, cleaning garbage and painting a school room for a few hours and then going back to our nice hostel with hot water and had dinner that was prepared for me by someone else. I just felt a little bit useless.

 

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