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Welcome to my blog, everyone! I live and work in Zambia as a youth worker. Here you'll find tidbits of beauty that I find as I live, love, and serve.

March 2018: Gap Year Begins

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Along, Beside, & Between: A Newsletter #23
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Gap Year Begins!

Hello All!
Funnily enough, this is the time of the year where the weather where you are and the weather where I am is (supposed) to be basically the same. Temperate, not cold or hot and a few showers here and there. I am enjoying it. Are you?

We kicked off our first month of gappers in March and it has already been a blast and a half! We have 18 spunky and unique students coming from all over Zambia. Take a look at my blog (www.missionaryaprilsylvester.com) for profiles on the students!

Much love and prayer, 

April

*Check out my new website with pictures and stories at www.missionaryaprilsylvester.com*

What's Been Going On
  • Gap year is in full swing. I am doing my normal duties of teaching swim lessons and leading my mentor group.
  • One of my mentees broke his leg the other week. Prayers for his recovery would be greatly appreciated! He is at home for now.
  • I taught a one-week intensive class on knowing yourself in light of God and His love. We talked about understanding our personalities, how we best connect with God, loving how God made us, and how we can best work together in a group. It went really well!
  • We are headed off for 2 weeks of a mission trip in the Northern part of Zambia. I would love your prayers for safe travels, health, protection, and lots of learning (myself included!).
  • I have also had the opportunity to further my yoga classes in town. Loving walking alongside people in their fitness journeys. 
Story Corner
Eighteen year old girls have drama. That’s just a fact. We don’t avoid that drama, but help the girls work through it.
One day I noticed one of the girls that I will call Rachel was not herself, quiet and lashing out quite easily. Right after lunch I grabbed her and said “Hey girlie. Want to go for a walk to pick guavas?”
“Okay” She mumbled.
A little ways down the path I asked “Has anything been on your mind?”
“Not really.” She said.
I pushed a little more, “You haven’t seemed like your normal self. Has anything happened to make you unhappy?”
She sighed. “I don’t think the girls like me.”
“Ah. I have felt that way before. It's not a nice feeling.”
We spent a long while talking about why she felt that way, why some experiences in her past would make it difficult to connect with the others, and suggestions to start with one person if befriending everyone at once was too daunting.
“And the most important thing to connecting with the girls is talking about things." I said. "If there are any issues, it only hurts to keep it inside.”

Later that night, I heard Rachel and another girl student talking outside of my room. They spent a good while talking about their differences and how they can bridge them. At one point, Rachel even used one of the terms from the lessons I gave on personalities to help understand the other girl, “I know you are a type 2 and that means you love caring for people. But I don’t want to walk all over you.”
I was such a proud mama in that moment. Seeing the girls grow and learn how to healthily relate with one another is one of my biggest goals!
 
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Copyright © 2015 April Sylvester, All rights reserved.

My mailing address is:
3745 Social Circle
Norcross, GA 30092

Contact SAMS for any fundraising questions:
PO Box 399
Ambridge, PA 15003
+1 724-266-0669
 
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April 2018: Not So Normal

January and February 2018: Be Prepared