Loving community, loving family

“I was becoming rebellious but my mother’s love for me was just as big. My father was travelling a lot so he wasn’t always there. I was rebellious because I was trying to find myself, find my role in this world. By trying to find myself, I was missing the point that I was already loved by my parents and had to accept that love,” said Mike,* a crewmember from the Netherlands, as he was telling the story of his relationship with his parents.

The team of Logos Hope volunteers, including Mike, had been advised that the children and teenagers they were going to meet were from families experiencing different struggles.

“There are people who love us – they can be parents, teachers – and turning away from them can break us. We should turn to those whose love we know is real,” Mike encouraged the young people. Looking back on the session, he said, “The teachers really look after the kids individually. What startled me was that they know their names, even though they work with 150 to 200 people and there were 40 to 50 people there on that day.”

After a time of giving advice to the youth, Logos Hope's crew played a local team in a football match. Mike and his fellow volunteers noticed that the young people were not competitive but rather enjoyed playing and connecting with each other. The crewmembers were impressed by the young people's behaviour and the nurturing atmosphere. When someone made a mistake, the team would take the time to explain how they could do better next time.

David, who works with Comunidad Nueva Familia (New Family Community), the organisation caring for the youth, expressed his joy: “It was a pleasure to receive you and we learnt a lot from the way you taught the message, simply. The kids showed a lot of interest. It has been a great help.”

“Being there gave me an amazing example of how we can share with people in our neighbourhood, because there are football courts and playgrounds everywhere in the Netherlands too,” reflected Mike. “It encouraged me to reach out, even through things I’m not really good at, because it meant a lot for them.”

*Name changed

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