On October 17th we, Elin Weman and Olof Lagerqvist, traveled from Sweden to spend half a year in Congo-Brazzaville, working with the sports school CF Gothia. Let us tell you about our first time in Congo.
“Coming to Africa was a new experience for the both of us, with a lot of impressions on the first day. The first two weeks we spent at the church guest house Saka Saka in the district of Bacongo. The weeks were intense, but we also a lot of spare time. In Congo, times and schedules are not really a thing, we learned from the beginning. On the other hand, it was kind ofnice because we were so tired of all the impressions.
On the first Saturday we traveled to Mfilou where the school CF Gothia is located. There was no activity going on but it was still nice to see how it looks and find out how the staff work.
On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays we take French courses at the French Institute in Brazzaville. For Olof, the courses have been great, the teacher is very good and makes sure everyone is involved. For Elin who has already studied French in Sweden, the teaching level is a little too easy, but it’s good with repetition.
The first impression of CF Gothia’s work and working with the children was fantastic. The leaders are very competent and know what they do. Hérve, who is the main manager, and Zico, who is also responsible, is very serious and handle children, parents and companies very well.
“LIFE HERE IS DIFFERENT”
So far, we have mostly worked in the storage area where clothes and other things are storaged. Olof took part in training with a group at one time, which he thought was fun and a little different from home. Next week, the idea is that Elin will lead physical work outs for the groups, which she looks very forward to.
Staying and living with another family brings both very nice meetings and obvious mixes of culture. It was a shock to Olof when he was forbidden to help with the dishes because he is a man. In Olof’s hosting family, there is a son who is about the same age and can speak English. It’s good for Olof’s progress in the French language, his Congolese brother can help translate.
Elin is having a good time as well. Life here is different, but you adapt quickly and learn new things everyday. It has been nice to have the Swedish missionaries here as a little extra family, to talk about impressions and eating Swedish food. Now the first week with the children is over and it brought us many challenges, but also many laughs and fun times.
The best thing of all is to be with the kids and see them develop, and have fun in a good environment where they can grow into strong individuals for a better Congo. “
This post is also available in: Svenska