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{INSIDER} 20th of December 2018

Only 11 more days and the new year will begin. The last few months have been packed with exciting and hard work, so we can start 2019 strong and focused - and get a peaceful rest in between. Here are the recent highlights:

{top} Marco was invited by YWAM Athens to speak on their DTS (Discipleship Training School) for a week on mercy ministry and community development - the very thing he lives and breathes every day here in South Africa. It has been very intense, but so refreshing for him to be able to pass on some of his knowledge, experience and most importantly love for people in need in such a different way. The top right picture doesn't show Marco with a tan (in case you wondered), but Ray from the 7de Laan Men's Group! He has gone through rehab, started a DTS in Cape Town in September and headed on outreach to Athens, just days before Marco arrived there. Ray had no clue that Marco was in the same city, so Marco surprised him with a visit and an invitation to share his testimony with the DTS students that Marco was spending the week with! It was such a powerful moment to see all the "theory" the students had just heard become real in front of their own eyes. Because that was exactly the message - it is not about theory or programmes, it is about Jesus meeting and loving people in their need. Thank you, Ray, for being so spontaneous and inspiring with your powerful testimony of transformation!

{bottom left} This is just one little photo of the maaaaany meetings the HOSA Board of Management and the whole HOSA team has had in the last 2 months. We have worked very hard at Strategic Planning on board level, streamlining our vision, mission, values and core strategies as an organisation and then moved on to Action Planning with all the different HOSA teams working across Cape Town. We still have some work to do  in order to have a concrete plan in place to work with the next 3-5 years. But sometimes half the job is done when you really look into fixing any weakness or inconsistencies in your foundation, so that whatever you build on top of that remains strong and sustainable. Many thanks to Toby Brouwer, our Coach & Facilitator Extraordinaire - you are a God-sent with your wisdom and experience and annoyingly challenging questions. You have gently pushed us to reach for the best God has for HOSA!

{bottom right} The year wouldn't be complete without some kind of end of year celebration out in the communities - this time a Camp Road Christmas Service! We partnered with our friends from the 9 Miles Project and almost 400 people came from the different communities we work with beyond 7de Laan, hearing beautiful music, a powerful and moving message, receiving prayer and a delicious meal to take away. The "Power Filled Girls" from the afterschool program that is happening weekly in 7de Laan were so brave and beautiful, performing a song and dance in front of such a big crowd. We are now taking a two week break from any regular things running at Hope Centre, but our whole team will take turns saying hello to people and keeping the fish in the aquaponics system alive.