Saturday, 26 March 2011

RAW Taster

On Sunday March 20th 2011 I went down to the Eastside in Vancouver for my first visit. I attended RAW (ready and willing) a three day youth event, that gives participants a little taste of eastside living.

I walked into RAW with a handful of fears about living in DTES, and walked away empty handed and filled with peace.

I feared that I would get fat! I know this is a slightly vain fear, but it also is a concern for my health, because I will be eating shelter food and  not attending a gym I feared that all my hard work to stay healthy would go to waste. I had the opportunity to eat at Harbour Light, the place that I will be eating my three meals at, and I was pleasantly surprised to see a well rounded meal, now I just have to monitor how much I eat since they are big man portions, and I am not a big man! As War College students we fast junk food and sweets during the week, which is a positive for my waistline! In addition to the relatively healthy eating habits, we have Drill class (physical activity) twice a week, we walk everywhere and I will be living in a building with stairs. The getting fat fear has been to put to rest, or to activity!

I feared my living conditions, sharing a bathroom with a floor of strangers, and cockroaches, mice and bed bugs. I will be living in a slum hotel, which can be compared to developing county conditions. One of the current War College students to their room, and I got to see where I might be living, while it was very small, and I would be sharing it with someone, it was not to bad at all, I have shared tight space before and I don't have a problem with it. I was very happy to see that we might have our own bathroom, not all rooms do, but I am praying that God will bless me with one. There are mice, bed bugs and cockroaches. I hate cockroaches. I saw a couple, they are very small compared to their African cousins, so I think with your prayers and God's grace I will be able to handle them.

There were more fears and anxieties, God was faithful to bring peace to all of them! I still am a little nervous about the cockroaches, so please be praying.

Now a new anxiety has come up: what am I going to do when my year is up? I don't think I am going to want to leave! My mom said this this is how I have always been, I will be all anxious and worried, and then as soon as I go I love it and don't want to leave. Somethings never change. That being said I know that through all the experiences I have had in my life where I am fearful, God has used them to change me, and I know that he will do the same with this year in the DTES.

Many blessings on you,


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