The One More Generation brother and sister team lands in South Africa
I am delighted to share with you these observations from two remarkable children and their family from the US who I am accompanying on a visit to one of the International Fund for Animal Welafare’s projects in South Africa.
Carter (now age 10.5) and his sister Olivia (now age 9) started their own non-profit organization, One More Generation (OMG), in 2009 to help save endangered species and clean up our environment.
The two have been extremely busy since starting OMG and regularly travel across the US as guest speakers in an effort to raise awareness about the plight of endangered species and about the need to help reduce the amount of plastic pollution we generate each year.
Carter and Olivia got involved with IFAW during our annual Animal Action Education program and were so drawn in by our animal projects and others in South Africa that they wanted to spend their holiday vacation with us.
Their commitment to helping others and fresh observations on our work have been a tremendous boost to the spirits of all us working day in and day out to protect animals.
I hope they serve to inspire you all as well. - LCH
Today is December 21st, 2011 and we went to a very poor village and delivered stuff and the kids loved it and we played soccer with them. They didn't know we were coming so it was so cool to see everyone waving at us as we pulled up with four trucks just filled with things.
When we first got out of the truck, one little boy came running up to me and shook my hand. All the other kids laughed at him. They must have thought he was so brave to do that! Some of the things we brought from home and we were able to make so many of these kids happy.
Carter and I gave away so many stuffed animals, and now we got to see our old stuffed animals that we hardly played with anymore with these kids half way around the world. I know they will love them, just like Carter and I did when we got them. We also gave away over 50 soccer balls that Carter's soccer team gave to him to give out. We gave the soccer balls to the older kids, and the stuffed animals to the younger kids.
Carter and I played soccer for a little while with some of the kids. You should have seen the smiles on their faces. Even though they couldn't understand what we were saying to them, it didn't matter. We were all happy and that's what mattered the most.
There had to be 100 kids there.
After we handed all of the stuff out, we walked around their village. I couldn't believe how they lived. They live in small little shacks that are made up of metal and whatever else they find. They have no electricity, no heat, no air-conditioning and only one place where they can get water. There were so many of these little shacks. I just can't believe how lucky Carter and I are to have a house. I never knew people lived like this.
When we left, Miss Cora (this really special lady that organized all of this) told us that what we gave those kids would be the only Christmas presents they would get, and they were probably the only Christmas gifts they have ever gotten. I have to believe that Santa can't forget these kids. Won't they get more on Christmas Day?
We then headed to Miss Cora's house....She is so special. She helps these people all of the time and she also helps animals that are hurt.
When we got to her house she had 22 dogs running around and we got to meet all of them. Most of them had been hurt and now they lived with her. She is so special! We also met a puppy that is only 10 weeks old and she is a pug and we named it Pugzee. We stopped at a pizza place to eat and then went to the hotel. I slept again the whole night, so I must not be nocturnal anymore!