Letter from a colleague on a humanitarian mission in Africa
As Transcom Italy is committed in several social projects in its several sites, and concretely supports and encourages all the humanitarian and solidarity projects promoted and carried out by its people, I would like to share with you something that happened few months ago in our site, in the South of Italy. During the summer of 2013, Annarita, who works at our Lecce center, set off for Africa in Marsabit, Kenya where she stayed for about a month on a humanitarian mission. Before she left we filled every available space in her luggage with all kinds of toys, including balloons, soap bubbles, pinwheels, kites, plastic animals, sponge balls and skipping ropes ... asking her to give them all on behalf of Transcom to children in the villages she visited. She specifically asked us for small objects so that they could easily be slipped into empty spaces in all the packages that were ready to send, containing food, clothes, medicines and basic necessities.
Annarita is standing on the left wearing dark glasses and a bandana[/caption] When she returned, Annarita proudly showed us all the pictures she had taken, including a series showing children playing with the balloons we had sent. And she wrote us this letter, which we would like to share with you. I’d like to tell you something about my Africa. Africa is ... an emotion that gets inside you and doesn’t go away, despite all the difficulties! Africa is ... hunger, thirst, joy, pain. And faith, the faith you discover you never had before and you find you can’t help but liking just a little. Every smile is pure joy; the strength of every mum is wonderful. You rediscover how beautiful life is from such a simple people, who have to walk barefoot at least 10 miles for a little water. Africa is reflected in the eyes of Alkano, a 10-month baby who weighs just 4 kg. When he looks into your eyes you think he could ask you for the world, but instead he just wants to live, something he cannot do because he needs a simple operation on his adenoids. Africa is ... the blessing and gratitude of a grandfather, simply for having helped him set his foot in plaster, after it had been fractured for more than a month. Africa is ... arriving in a village in the middle of a desert and first being asked to go to mass together. Africa is ... walking down the street and feeling a child’s hand in your own. And thinking that he is looking for help, when in fact he is the one helping you, because when you turn to look into his eyes, they say “smile because this is life and it has to be lived with a smile"! Africa is so much ... too much to explain with a pen and paper. You have to experience it to understand. A big thank you to everyone at Transcom. You have added a little color to this world with your gifts! Annarita