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