My name is Autumn Buzzell and I live and work in Ghana, West Africa with City of Refuge Ministries. Here, I run our school, Faith Roots International Academy, and get to be a part in rescuing and the healing of children who have been trafficked into the fishing trade, orphaned, abandoned, and those who just need a little extra loving. What an amazing gift this life is!

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Thursday, September 13, 2012

First Days of School

School has started up again and here is what my days have been filled with:

*crying preschoolers (especially Malvin and a new little girl named Emelia who doesn't appreciate my skin color)

*registration of new students (Parents have been coming in by the droves every morning for several hours, only to hear that their child's class is full and they can be added to the waiting list.  I had two parents yesterday sitting in front of my office for over an hour, refusing to leave until I granted them admission...unfortunately, the class still remained full!).

*helping teachers get what they need for their classrooms and assisting students in the purchase of their school books.

*watching over our Omorefe kids as John and Stacy are out of country for their anniversary.

*chasing Justice home and back as he is not starting preschool this year while the other little three year olds are

*putting band-aids on boo boos

*feeling like I'm going a mile a minute, but perhaps it's only my mind that is moving that fast!

Needless to say, this week has been INCREDIBLY busy for me.  But, all in all, it has been a successful first few days of school. 

I remember my first days of school last year where I had tears from almost every grade level come through the office as well as at least two kids everyday that first week that were throwing up outside the office.  That was quite an experience.

It has been exciting to see how parents are beginning to trust the learning that is happening at our school.  Our teachers are teaching and the students are learning and I see that students are being enrolled here now, not out of curiosity, but out of the success of last year's students.  That is exciting to me.

There is still so much to consider in this coming year.  We have teacher's that just don't have the content knowledge to teach sometimes even the most basic of concepts.  We have students with high needs.  I had staff who quit on the first day of school.  It has been a tricky journey this first week, and will continue to be a tricky journey as we look towards the future of the school.

Sometimes, I consider my 185 students here, the families, the teachers, the things that the students need to learn, what the teacher's don't yet know, and I feel the heavy burden of responsibility to keep things running and keep training and keep monitoring student progress.  It's not easy...

But I have to keep remembering that this isn't about me.  This is about the Father working through me.  It's not by my strength that these things will be accomplished, but through God's perfect strength. 

When I remember that, I know that this whole vision is possible.  Not easy, but certainly possible. 

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