|…it came in the post, 5 days early!
Much sooner, than the expected 7-10days we recieved a parcel yesterday, blurry eyed by our wonderful cornish hosts Mark and Bronwen Davy. As we saw the South Africa House stamp on the back of the envelope we knew it was the news we were waiting for, some 5 days earlier than expected!
We tore open the package to find only a letterhead with no information and our passports in the package, we frantically flicked through Rachel’s passport first wondering if the £2200 visa might be in place somewhere, and there it appeared! On pg14 in all its glorious formality, a 3 year multiple entry visa to South Africa! We were overjoyed! We then turned to my passport, an older version with no chip in it, being sure we would fine another, this one took about 8 seconds longer to find we sent us in to that warm panic feeling, but finally a river surge flood of relief was found in page 10!!!
WE HAVE OUR VISA’s
We are SO delighted, this was our last formal hurdle and as many of you had heard pretty much an impossible feat. After spending around £1000 on preparations, incl x-rays and medicals and then the trip the London, and the unexpected £1200 we are over the moon to have 3 years of multiple entry allowance for our work in South Africa.
The visa was seemingly impossible because we had fulfilled all conditions for application apart from one, ominously called “proof of financial means”. We have scoured the forums which inform about such conditions and found that on average the South African Government expected those applying for a volunteer visa to have regular monthly donations to the sum of £700-750 per month PER PERSON! Although this does correlate to the cost of living in South Africa, we were seriously worried as our monthly support has fluctuated between £200-600 per month over the last 6 months, much less than the required £1400-£1500. But somehow it was processed sucessfully and we are DELIGHTED!
We know so many of you have prayed for this for us, and for that we are truly grateful, we think this is a brilliant example of our belief that in missions there are no lone rangers, we need the full body of Christ to accomplish what needs to be done, and so we want to thankyou to those who laboured in prayer over this and pledged new monthly support in order to help us raise our support towards the required level, we genuinely couldn’t do any of what we do without you.
God Bless, We’ll let you know when leaving dates etc are in place,
Liam and Rachel