THE BRIDGE INTERNATIONAL
Bridging the gap
The Open Gate
The Open Gate project supported individuals and the marginalised in Chinhoyi with survival basics.
DANIEL, an upholsterer from Lion’s Den, who was so desperate for work that he cycled 25km with some foam strapped to the back of his rickety old bicycle just so that he could earn a few dollars that day. His smile lit up his face and for two days, he worked on his rusty, pedal sewing machine with dignity. At the end of the job, he proudly presented two chairs that had been superbly covered and the quality of which could have come from any London outlet store. Our hope is to help him develop his business. Someone has already donated an industrial sewing machine
WASHINGTON came to our gate hungry, hopeless and with a diagnosis of TB. He had open sores on his legs and hadn’t eaten a proper meal in days. We gave him some food, and prayed for him. A few days later he came back to tell how he was miraculously healed and the hospital had given him a clean bill of health. He had also been evicted and we were able to pay for a small room for him for a month. He went on to get a job and was able to provide an income for his family.
ADVANCE, is a teenager who arrived at the gate weeping because his mother had just died and he was now the sole provider for his blind grandmother and two baby brothers. He hardly spoke English, and we could hear his stomach juices growling as he explained that he hadn’t eaten a meal in three days. He was asking for some money so that he could go and bury his mother and then he needed to go and find a job. He was able to pay for the funeral and provide a basic meal for his family.
ANGEL is a newborn baby who was found in a plastic bag at the taxi rank in Chinhoyi a few weeks ago. Abandoned by her mother, she was taken to the government hospital where she is still staying. She has many mothers, as the nurses all take turns caring for her during their shift rotations. She lies in a baby bassinette in the corridor near the nurses’ station. We were able to take the nurses some formula and nappies for Angel, but what she really needs is a family to love her and care for her.
Thuthuka Street Children
This project supported Thuthuka street childrens' house in Bulawayo, which offers a home to children between birth and 18 who have been living on the streets. Donations went towards food, education, basic medical costs and running the home.
Donations also provided some young people with school fees and schooling costs.
Letter from Chipo (name changed)
My name is Chipo. I am 15 years old. I am a girl who is a bit intelligent and doing Form 2 now at Northlea High School.
It was summer time and the wind was blowing to the North East when I thought of running away from home. I lived in Gweru in Ascort with my young brother and my father. My father used to beat me thoroughly, he was very harsh and whenever I do something wrong whether on purpose or not he would beat me. So I decided to run away because he took a wood ,a big one and beat my knees so that I cannot walk to cut the story short.
"Tomorrow morning I went to train so that I can have a lift to unknown place. I came to Bulawayo and I didn’t know anyone then, I went to a restuarant to take some left overs. I stayed two days in the streets and then a woman took me to her house and stayed for a long time there and when she was about to go to South Africa she called her young sister to stay with me .Then that woman hated me very much and she said take this money and go.I went to an omnibus then I stayed two days in the streets again.
The Thuthuka officers called me and asked me some questions and I answered .I went and slept at a police station and next morning I went to Thuthuka Training Centre. Thats where I started to live and now am learning Form two .When I grow up I want to be a pilot.
Now I'm benefitting something from Thuthuka: school,food,shelter and some other things because God loves me very much."
In September last year there were 14 female prisoners in the Chinhoyi Prison, who were delighted with their hygiene and food packs. Comment from Pastor Max whose wife delivered the parcels and spoke to the ladies: ‘It was all smiles from these ladies. We solved real issues. They were so pleased with the sanitary items –pads, pads –they were tearing old clothes for sanitary wear. Some had no soap. Pants and slops (shoes) is their request at the moment as well as items for two pregnant ladies who are due to give birth soon’.