#B2B2018: Eamon Hamilton Blog

I fully believe that no matter how much words I try to say about here can’t truly justify how I feel and just how special this place/feeling actually is, it’s completely mindblowing, obviously the actual physical journey is Belfast to Blanco but for me my B2B journey has felt a lot more like Balintoy to Blanco. The last year of my life has defiantly without a doubt been the most longest, challenging and rewarding year of my life. On Saturday we had the fun day, wow. Two divided community’s coming together and you would think we were all one big community our team included, from the young people right up to people high up in the community’s getting on having a laugh it puts life into perspective especially taking into account the huge divide back home and how we can’t even get a few people on top of a hill to speak to eachother yet over here people with no homes, broken families, no money, no food, no water not even a pair of shoes on their feet are so supportive of eachother. It’s so special. Whilst at the fun day I had seen Paneshia, this is a girl I started to build a relationship with on the first day. At first I couldn’t string a sentence together with her she was the most awkward person I had ever met in my life all she did was smile and laugh, this was the first challenge I had gave myself was to get a conversation out of Paneshia, after a 2 and a half hours that felt like ten minutes I spent so much time with her trying to get something out and to ultimately break down a huge language barrier with her which didn’t help the matter, when waitso said to us about hopping back on the combis I fully believed that I hadn’t done enough of what I wanted to do with her but before I got on the combi she gave me a hug and said to come back tomorrow, what a feeling, coming over that first block for me was huge it has set the tone for the rest of the journey. When I seen her again for the second time she came up and just gave me a hug I sat with her for a bit building on the relationship we had built on the Monday however soon followed by this was Devon. During the time in the valley I began to spend a lot of time with Devon, he is 7 years old and hands down has taught me more about myself than what 14 years of education has done and what any amount of years of working has ever done, the first time I seen him at the food drop he was in his school uniform fully clothed looking really well, this made me think that maybe he was a bit well off compared to the rest of the kids in this township, it was only until the day after I realised that this wasn’t the case, he had came down wearing ragged old clothes with no shoes on clothes to small for him but of course the most amazing thing he was still wearing was a beaming bright smile from ear to ear, he was absolutely lit to see me and the rest of the team! At only 7 years of age he was one of many that knew many special things were about to happen! At first when I was talking to Devon I almost felt as if I was cheating on Paneshia it’s crazy, you’re first connection with a child makes you wanna stick to them the whole time, I think it’s only after you actually realise why we do visit two different townships, number one it opens up hugely your eyes to how different it is and number two it extremely pushes you back out of that shell you had put yourself in when you had that connection the first time, thinking happy days I’ll not have to talk to anyone else this is me set! I am so thankful this isn’t the case as I have now met not one but two truly unbelievable people! During my time with Devon I have learnt so much about not just myself but about him, about how lucky my community is and most importantly how well I actually was brought up, he’s amazing I really can’t describe what he has done for me I’ll never forget him and I’ll never be able to repay him, no money no feeling no item can replace how he has made me feel and think, I’m 19 and one of my role models in life is a 7 year old boy. When devon seen me at the fun day with Paneshia I don’t think anyone has ever looked more disappointed in me ever in my life, after finally getting him to actually talk to me again I spent my time with him and Paneshia, all I felt was happiness. I have no other word to describe the kind of moment this was, I’ll forever cherish it for the rest of my life! The few days we had spent a bit of time in the valley, doing other stuff including an absolutely amazing talk from Pastor Norman and a completely special talk from Henrietta was amazing, they are two complete inspirations! These two people really do have all the grounds to be weak but they are so strong they are truly amazing people! During my time in the valley I seen so much poverty, poverty I have never ever experienced before houses that honestly my dogs hut is better than, yet still every day the people of Blanco are out smiling and welcoming us more than our own back home, screaming B2B and getting a real excitement because they know something special is on the way. To spend this journey with my team is an even bigger privilege , 17 really special people there hasn’t been one of them that hasn’t blew me away on this trip or made me look at them and just smile with pride, honestly we wind eachother up something shocking but I genuinely can not describe how much they mean to me, and I didn’t even know them two years ago. To do this with my sister is an ever bigger honour honestly what a woman, she is a complete legend I’ll never forget this for the rest of our lives. As I come to the end of my journey in Blanco I can only feel a sense of pride and happiness in myself, in my last session before we left for here I spoke about how I had been missing emotion recently and feeling empty this has put it all back into perspective for me Even though I could stay here for the rest of my life I’m looking forward to get back to my community and to finally embrace the passion I have for my community and for youth work and to do this for the rest of my life. I know that has been down there for so long but I needed something like this for so long, to get home and to be able to bring this back to my amazing home aswell and to spend more time with my we brother Michael, I’m completely buzzing for it, but for now it’s time to enjoy my last day in George. Saying good bye won’t be easy but I fully believe one day I’ll be back to say hello but for now it is time to just embrace it and to go on to Cape Town. It’s not a place,it’s a feeling It’s not the end of the book, it’s the start of a new chapter It’s not a goodbye Blanco, it’s a see ya later. 

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