Blog Image

Casa Abba Project Blog

Casa Semear Blog

This blog is writen by various people as they volunteer and work in Casa Semear in Sao Paulo Brazil.

Day 22 & 23 – Fri. 30th & Sat. 31st July – Last Day

2010 Group Posted on Wed, August 11, 2010 14:09:47

Last day! After breakfast we went over to Casa Semear for about 10am and the morning kids club was already in full swing. Alan was finishing off some of his paintings so we could take them back to Scotland with us and it was lovely to see Eric (his first time back at the club since the camp) who was very happy to see us with big smiles and hugs all around! Each child was given a Scottish pencil and it was Eric’s 10th birthday that day so he was also given a little Scottish flag. It was very moving to see how absolutely delighted he was with such a small and simple gift.

Someone had brought a Scottish and Brazilian flag so we had a lot of fun and banter with the kids, taking photos and singing songs. We sang the Scottish national anthem to the children (much to their amusement!) only to be treated by them singing to us the Brazilian anthem. Even Snr. Luiz joined in the fun!

We said our final farewell to the children and Snr Luiz then drove back to the girls’ house for lunch with Hedi and Tauane. We were just doing some last minute packing when Delton popped in to say goodbye. It was a very special time as he prayed for us as a team and as individuals. We also used the opportunity to give Hedi a little gift so he could translate for us. She asked him to share with us how blessed SHE had felt during the time we had stayed in her home and later gave us all an individual gift. It was all very moving! Celio, from Abba, also came by wish us God’s blessing.

After lunch we headed back to Casa Semear for the final time. The afternoon kids club had already started but the children were clearly up to something as we were not allowed upstairs for about 10mins. When we were eventually let upstairs they had decorated the table with a big yellow table cloth and we were treated to a cake and truffles made especially for us by Dora, Silvana and one of the girls, Aline. The cake was delicious and was washed down by our favourite tipple, Guarana. We played a few games with the children then each one of us was presented with a card, signed by all the children. On the front of each card was a photograph of the individual team member, taken sometime during the 3 week mission. It was a very special gift and it will be treasured for life. After a final photo shoot we all said our final goodbyes to the children and Dora.

We got back to the girls house about 6pm to find Caio waiting to drive us to the airport. We said a sad farewell to Hedi, Tauane and Paulette then left the house for the last time. Some of the team went with Caio and the rest with Robert and Silvana. The traffic was pretty bad as we drove through the centre of Sao Paulo and it took us over 2 hours to get to the airport. The check-in was quite straight forward so we had time for a coffee with Robert, Silvana and Caio before we had to say our farewells.

The 11 hour flight was a bit uncomfortable but I think most of us managed to get some sleep at some point during the flight. We collected our boarding passes for Glasgow at Heathrow and had a few hours to spare before our next flight. It was so nice to be able to do such simple things like washing our hands in warm water and ordering a normal cup of tea!! We arrived in Glasgow to find our baggage, friends and loved ones waiting for us.

Our time in Brazil has been a very special experience that we will never forget. God has definitely been part of this mission and we have been truly blessed by being able to be part of it.

Esther on behalf of the group.

Photo Gallery can be found here

Douglas’s blog can be found here

Day 21 – Thur. 29th July – Big Clean Up

2010 Group Posted on Wed, August 11, 2010 14:08:00

Today was primarily a “clear up and clear out” day. Over the past couple of weeks we’ve made a significant amount of mess. The dust sheets cover any available bits of floor, the paint tins are dotted around in many different “convenient” spaces throughout the house, the tools have been flung far and wide and of course, not to mention all the dust and debris that’s been piling up day to day. So, today’s focus was to leave the house in a useable condition – if not even a little better than when we arrived.

The boys put the finishing touches to the arts and crafts room. It’s an unbelievable transformation. Three weeks ago it was literally bare brick, and now it’s freshly plastered ready for painting. Clearing up did give us a chance to really see the difference our work has made to the house. It will all make for a very good “before and after” show when we return! Home Makeover eat your heart out.

The kids came as per usual and we made some keyrings and played games with them. It was nice to be a little less work focused today and be able to really give our time to the children. There is a sense of familiarity now between the children and the Tios, that we’re all part of Casa Semear, but the reality of our imminent departure is sneaking up on us. It doesn’t feel like it’s been three weeks. We’ve achieved so much but the time has gone all too quickly it’s been hard to take it in.

In the evening the whole team went out for a last meal to a very nice churrascaria called Buffalo. There were all nine of the Scottish team, plus the whole Meikle family, Dora, Dorothee, Caio, Hedi and Tauane. By sheer coincidence Delton and his family were there too celebrating the birthday of one of his kids. It was like a great big family celebration. The food was wonderful, even more than the last one, and of course the boys put us to shame with their capacity to eat more food that I thought was humanly possible.

It was a great way to spend our last proper evening together, just basking in each other’s company and sharing all the memories we’ve created in the last three weeks. On the way home in one car, myself, Esther and Tauane had a “High School Musical 2” sing-athon. I’m not sure many other people in the car appreciated our entertainment but we had a great time anyway!

Tomorrow is our last day at Semear with the kids and we’ll spend the rest of the time packing and getting ready to leave. Tonight has been a wonderful, warm, family evening which I’m sure many of us will remember fondly when we think of our time together.

Amie on behalf of the group.

Photo Gallery can be found here

Douglas’s blog can be found here