Sponsored since: 2013
How we got him: When I registered for the Tanzania trip, I started advocating for kids who needed sponsors there. I posted tons of them on my facebook page. Bonifas had already been waiting almost a year for a sponsor when I shared him- and then over a month went by, and he was still waiting. He had the cutest little smile in his picture, and I just couldn't understand why no one was sponsoring him. I wound up feeling really sad about it, and one night I texted my mom about my frustrations. She asked more about him, and ended up offering to help me out with his sponsorship!! And I was really happy to share this story with Bonifas when I met him in Tanzania. With the help of the translator, I explained how I was drawn to his sweet smile, and how I prayed for him to find a sponsor before becoming his sponsor myself. He smiled when we told him this story! And the translator laughed and said "we should tell all the children to smile BIG!" We actually got Bonifas before Elisha, but it took a little time to get everything set up with Bonifas' account and mine, so that's why this post comes after his. : )
About his family: Bonifas lives with his mom and dad and four sisters!!! One of them is named Karen- which was exciting since my mom's name is Karen. He loved that! His family raises cattle and donkeys, which is pretty cool. They live not too far from Arusha. Out of my three boys, his journey was the shortest to the hotel for our child visit day- it only took him about an hour to get there!
Hobbies and interests: Bonifas is just such a cool little guy. He has a very quiet voice. He smiles a lot and is up for whatever- he didn't hesitate when I asked if we could sit inside and play for a while, but he also was down for whatever Elisha suggested. His gift to me was to pray for me- and when we prayed, he put his little hands on my arm and prayed in a sweet, soft voice. He is also a bit of a klutz. I lost track of the number of times he fell down while playing! He fell down doing cartwheels, fell down while playing soccer, even came down the slide on the playground pretty crazily....and fell onto the ground. He seems pretty used to it, though. With the translator's help, I asked him if he was wearing slippery shoes. He thought that was pretty funny. He's also pretty funny. When we ate lunch together, he kept trying to use his utensils in different ways than they were intended. Like loading food onto the flat side of a knife and eating off of it like it was a spoon. And then laughing when we noticed. He packed away quite a bit and then sat back in his chair with his hand on his belly, like someone's grandpa after a big Thanksgiving meal.
Here's what Bonifas has had to say in his letters!
Bonifas' previous picture, which I asked for by email
The first picture we received of Bonifas, with is famous little smile!
"My family celebrates national holidays by visiting animal game parks."
"At my project we celebrate Christmas by being given clothes. My family celebrates new year by walking around. At my project we celebrate the New Year by glory and cheer."
"Bonifas says thanks so much for the letter you sent to him. He says thanks so much and God bless you richly."
Falling down the slide
Playing some soccer
"After school I like to graze our cattles."
"Bonifas says thanks so much for letter including stickers you sent to him. He is so happy. He says that he was so happy when (at the time) you came to visit him. ou are most welcome to Tanzania once again."
What a privilege to see my sponsor kids drawing and coloring right in front of me!
Scooping his food up with a knife. :)
"Bonifas says he loves you very much. He says he welcomes you so much to Tanzania."
"He has a Bible passage from the book of Psalm 23:1.'The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.' He asks what do you want him to pray for you?"
Shaking hands the Tanzanian way before we get into this little guy's presents.
He was so full! This is one of my favorite pictures ever.
"Bonifas is greeting you in the name of Jesus. He says that he loves you so much. He asks on how you are doing....he says he has seen your questions which you asked. He says that he has his sister called Prisca and they go to school together."
"He says he was happy to see you in Tanzania an he welcomes you again."
"He says that a crocodile is an animal living in water."
"He asks you to pray that he can build the house and pass his exams."
Bonifas had his picture updated at the end of 2014. I was excited to see it, and then freaked out a little when I recognized his stripey shirt as one I had brought him in Tanzania!!!