After months of careful planning, over 2,400 orphans from across the country were treated to a Christmas party at Gateway High School last Friday.
Organised by Miracle Missions, which promotes initiatives that value sustainability, self sufficiency, good governance and bringing hope to various sectors of society, children came from both the rural areas and cities to share a happy time together.
Miracle Missions organiser Jacqueline Anderson said some of these vulnerable children have never been to Harare. “We want these kids to realise that they can dream bigger and they can have things they desire,” she said. “Let the orphans interact, do not tell them they are poor, teach them trust, integrity, responsibility, honesty and not to be a beggar, let them believe they can look after themselves.”
The children from different orphanages participated in games, sports, jumping castle and craft work. They had a huge amount of fun playing games, sports and music from Othnell Moyo with his jembe drum, Bla Afro-Can Shava and Schizo.
Green Ambassador, Dereck Mpofu performed a song entitled ‘Chisikana Changu Zimbabwe,’ a song which saw the kids up and dancing. “I’m here to uplift the Christmas spirit of the kids,” said Dereck.
Miracle Missions started organising Christmas parties four years ago. Then only 89 children attended, this year was the biggest with 2,400 children registered and about 250 volunteers coming to help out. Some of the volunteers were Gateway High School students. Gateway School teacher, Joan Pidy said, “We want the students to connect with other children who are less privileged than they are.”
Four year old Rutendo Jarakupi from Kairos Family Life Institution in Goromonzi kept on dancing to the stereo while queuing at lunch with her leader, “I am very happy and we are playing games,” she said.
Terrance Yeatman and family worked on the lunch and helped to pack 3,000 bags, one for each child. All sorts of different foods to fill the bags were donated by companies such as Lobels, Goldy Bites, Schweppes, Crystal Candy, Dendairy, Arenel, N’Richards, Natkon Foods, Simba, Gift, Agribank, as well as the British Embassy.
Each bag included food and a Christmas Cracker made by members of the community who had come together before the event, bringing wrapping paper and crafting something to make the kids feel special.
The children were grouped into age groups and rotated through the different activities during the party
Yvonne Mutoka a 17-year old from Philadelphia, an organisation based at Hartfield, said, “I am so excited to meet new people and play different games, it would be great if we could spend more time here.”
Photos: Jenny Ansley