7 days

Wow, time flys! I have one week left here in Nigeria. It’s bitter sweet to think about. I’m excited to reconnect with my friends and family at home but saying goodbye is not going to be easy! The time I have spent here has truly enriched my soul! The children I have worked with have really shown me so much about love, life, and faith.

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Girls Retreat

Easter weekend we held a retreat for the 42 girls who live at the transition home where I work twice a week. It was an action packed weekend, full of laughter, games, worship, pictures, and good conversation. Spending one on one time with the girls was so great! I loved getting to hangout, laugh and learn more of their stories. Here are a couple fun pictures from the weekend! my small group ❤️

Kitchen duty! Instead of dying eggs we made tie dye bags!

Kano

6D6B9474-D11B-40BC-8BCE-63A2FC50FCDEThis past week I had the amazing opportunity to go on a ministry exposure trip. We traveled five hours north to Kano, a City of 5 million. The time spent there was very impactful. We toured ministries, visited missionaries, and got to enjoy the conveniences of a big city. (Restaurants and big grocery stores!) The feel of Kano is very different then Jos, the weather is at least 10 degrees hotter. (the first day we it was 104*) It is also an Islamic city, where 96% of the population are Muslim. It is a very difficult place for Christians to be, but after visiting, my prayer for the City is that more missionaries will be called to go. The view below is from Dalla Hill, where we could see a 360 view of the city. We met many sweet street boys while we were up there.

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We also got to visit a church that has been meeting outside for 7 years because their building was burned down and they are not approved to rebuild. God is good and in all the years of them meeting outside it has never rained on them! Not even in rainy season! It was so beautiful to worship with the congregation there. They kept telling us that it was such an encouragement to them for us to be there. But we are the ones who were truly blessed and encouraged by their strong faith, even under persecution.

 

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The cloth market in Kano is AMAZING, you could spend all day there and not see it all. The colors and prints of the fabric are so beautiful and such a vibrant contrast to the surroundings.

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One of my favorite things while in Kano were the dye pits! They have been in operation over 600 years. There they use indigo dye to color fabric and make all kinds of beautiful tie dye designs. Being an artist, I instantly fell in love with the place and their products.

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Prayer-

•Pray for The city of Kano and for the Christians there to be encouraged.

•This weekend we are having a retreat for the girls in the transition home. Pray it goes well and the girls learn, grow, and feel loved.

•Pray that this last month I have here will be productive and that I finish my time well.

 

Hair

Last week I spent over three hours in a local salon to get my hair plaited (braided)! It was such a fun experience! Since my arrival in Nigeria, I’ve been curious to see what the beauty industry looks like here. One day after work I went down the street to a local beauty shop. After a warm greeting I sat down and looked at pictures, we all soon agreed on my new hairstyle and everyone there was excited! The three+ hours consisted of trying on wigs, laughing a lot, and get asked many “hot topic” questions about America. All in all, it was a great experience and I’m loving my new Nigerian hairstyle!

Village outreach

I had the amazing opportunity to join Nigerian missionaries on a village outreach last week. It was such a great experience! The village was about two hours away from Jos. Driving out there made my heart happy. I love nature and Gods creation so much! The landscape here in Nigeria is so unique and beautiful! The huge rock mountains are such a stark contrast to the flat sprawling farm land. It’s like nothing I’ve seen before.

The evening we arrived we showed a film in their language that shared the gospel. After that we were able to sing and fellowship with the villagers. At first the children were scared of me when I approached because they had never seen a white person before. But, soon it turned into a game and everyone wanted to come and shake my hand or touch me.

The next morning we got to spend time with the school children. Pictured above is their one room school house. The kids were so sweet and excited we were there. They recited songs and verses for us. Even though they don’t speak a lot of English we were able to interact, pray, and teach them some new songs which was really fun!

Prayer:

-Please pray for the missionary pastor and for his family serving this village.

-They are also asking for prayer for the finances to buy more land to expand the church and school.

– For the gospel to spread and Christ to be glorified by their ministry.

Street boys

img_1745       Eight years ago when I started cosmetology school I would never have dreamed I would have the opportunity to use those skills in Nigeria! This week I had the privilege of cutting about twenty street boys hair. The outreach I am serving with caters to the Muslim street boys. During the program, they tell them a Bible story, feed them, and usually do some type of grooming. Even though most of the boys don’t speak English it was so fun to interact with them! Doing hair is such a personal thing, whether you are in a kitchen, salon, or in the streets of Nigeria! That is just one of the reasons I have fallen in love with my job.

IDP Camp

Two days a week I am teaching at one of the IDP schools right outside of Jos. Most of the children at the camp are orphans and have been displaced from their homes due to crisis in their state. At the school I am teaching Christian Religious Education to Jr. and Sr. High kids. I was worried about it at first because I am not a teacher. Things never came easy to me when I was in school, so I have always been intimidated by the world of education. BUT, by Gods grace, things are going great! I am loving teaching and interacting with the kids. They are so sweet and very eager to learn. Next week we are doing a drama in class of the Parable of the Prodigal Son. They were all very excited to hear that we were going to acting out what they had just learned!

When we are done teaching for the day, we stay and play with the elementary school kids. That has been such a blast! We brought a parachute last week (not going to lie, I was reliving my childhood with them a bit!) They loved it. I have also learned a few new African games and songs, the kids love teaching us! I am feeling truly blessed to be able to be here and serve!

Settling in

438C0B57-48FD-4402-AB91-AA85E175F0BD.jpegLife is good! So far I’ve had a blast touring Jos, meeting new people, and eating great food! I am still getting used to the dust of dry season, and heat of Nigerian sun! Yes, the sun does feel different on my skin here! This week I will be officially starting my ministries! Listed below are the places I will be serving during the week.

-Bassa

A girls transition home.  I will be assisting teaching vocational skills, farming, and life skills. This week, I am starting out with teaching the girls how to hand sew! I think it will be really neat, I have a couple fun projects in mind for them! I will also be teaching sports! So I will be able teach and share my love for volleyball!

IDP Camp

A home and safe place for children who have been internationally displaced from there homes, due to crisis in there states. I will be teaching Christian Studies in their secondary school twice a week.

-Gyero

An Orphanage where they also have a Christian School. I will be helping out with their new arrivals program, along with a couple of other things. I went this week and it was so great to meet, play, and love on the kids!

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Prayer-

Confidence in teaching at the IDP school.

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I would love to hear from you!

Email- Ksmith7787@gmail.com

Text- Whatapp

Snail mail- Kate Smith

c/o ECWA-SIM

PMB 2009

Jos, Plateau State

Nigeria

Jos, Nigeria

1A243150-21EF-407D-9492-C17D261A6E55.jpegAfter over a day of travel I made it to Jos Nigeria. I’m praising God for safe travels! It has been a whirlwind so far, but I have loved every minute of it! I am now settled into my apartment (pictured above) and am getting acquainted with the city.  Our compound is in the middle of the Jos so we can walk to most things we need. So far the food has been amazing, nice and spicy! Yesterday I got to explore the market for a bit which was fun but also a little overwhelming…..I know soon it will be my new normal. I bought fabric to get an African dress made by a widows sewing ministry they have here. It will be ready in a couple of weeks and then I can post some pictures. They encouraged me to get bright bold colors and prints. Which as most of you know is not my usual attire lol but I’m excited to see how it turns out! The internet here is not very good so I can’t upload very many pictures.  God Bless, Kate

It’s me Kate!

Welcome to my blog! If you have found yourself here you probably know some of the details about me and my upcoming trip. But for those of you who don’t, its me Kate! Twenty eight year old, standard white female, taking a break from work and everyday life to explore Gods call on my life to serve in Jos, Nigeria. In Jos, I will be teaching english and christian studies along with working in a girls home. I am thrilled to be given this opportunity and can’t wait to see what is in store for the next couple months! I’m planning on posting pictures, updates and prayer requests on here when I can. Please feel free to contact me on here or email me at Ksmith7787@gmail.com