Bracelets Connect University Students with TLC
Students have discovered The Luke Commission and like what they see – so much, in fact, that they have spearheaded ways for other students to get involved with Eswatini.
Take two young women at Mount Vernon Nazarene University in Mount Vernon, Ohio. Katie Henderson and Catie Hayes manned a booth at a recent Sonfest gathering.
"Never was there a moment when we weren't flooded with people wanting to hear about what we were doing and why," said Henderson.
The coeds and their helpers bought "a ton of yarn to create bracelets." They premade 200. Soon all were distributed, and "we had to send someone out to get more yarn," Henderson continued. "The biggest hook we had was those bracelets."
One strand of red yarn represented Eswatini, while a strand of blue yarn characterized the individual making the bracelet.
"We held one end of the string as the person tied the knots, visibly and tangibly signifying the connection with Eswatini," Henderson explained.
The college students talked about the severity of HIV/AIDS and TB in Eswatini and how The Luke Commission was tackling the problems, all while the booth visitor made his or her bracelet.
Before each new bracelet owner left the booth, Henderson and Hayes made them promise to wear the bracelet at least a week, tell others what they had learned about TLC, and pray for the people of Eswatini.
Often, those who had visited the booth returned with a handful of interested, new folks.
That Saturday, Henderson noted, "God's movement was incredible to witness. I felt truly blessed to share the work and impact TLC is having in Eswatini."
TLC founders and directors, Dr. Harry and Echo (PAC) VanderWal have just returned to the States. It's the rainy season in Eswatini when it becomes especia lly-difficult to travel to the remote rural areas.
The VanderWals will speak at three universities – Mount Vernon October 26; Cedarville University on November 3 in Cedarville, Ohio; and Southern Nazarene University on December 1 in Oklahoma City, OK.
Unveiled at these universities will be a plan for students to sponsor HIV tests at $10 per patient. "It's an exciting way for individual students to help fight to the pandemics of TB and HIV/AIDS which threaten Eswatini's very existence," said Harry VanderWal.
The VanderWals' full winter speaking schedule is posted here. They will return to Eswatini January 11.
by Janet Tuinstra