Duo bound for India

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Beulah Bezuidenhout and Samantha Martin are off to India next month, but their trip will be no holiday.

Through the House of Breakthrough Church, they will travel to some of the poorest villages in India to asses their needs and help out in any way they can.

House of Breakthrough have churches in India, through which more than 100 street kids have been rescued and put into schools.

Pastor Damien Goodsir said House of Breakthrough also build houses for the poor – regardless of religion.

Last year, House of Breakthrough Oamaru sent five people over to India.

“It’s a hand up, not a handout. We give them practical advice,” Mr Goodsir said.

This year Miss Martin, 25, and Miss Bezuidenhout, 21, will be partnered up with the House of Breakthrough Church in India and will go to places tourists never get to see.

“There’s no running water in some places, no electricity and these girls will be right in there,” he said.

“It’ll be full-on every day that they are there.”

Mr Goodsir expects that the girls will be mobbed by children during their visits.

“The children will love them. We go over there thinking that we will help them, but the thing is, they will come back completely changed, too,” he said.

“Just seeing that extreme level of poverty.”

Mr Goodsir said it would not be a holiday for the girls. They are there to make a difference.

“These girls are very mature and they’ve got the characters that when they go over, they want to make a difference. We don’t just send anyone,” he said.

“We go over with a purpose saying ‘how can we help?’, it’s not sightseeing.”

Leaving on October 13, they will be in India for 10 days, and Miss Bezuidenhout said she was excited to head into the unknown.

“It’s really interesting because we don’t know where we’re going into. We’re going willing to help, serve and love and do what needs to be done,” she said.

For Miss Martin, it’s an opportunity to be inspired and driven to help change the world through connecting and engaging with the people.

“I want to be broken by what I see over there because I’ve never experienced that level of poverty. I feel like in the Western world we’re really complacent and comfortable and I want to be broken out of that,” she said.

“I know it’s going to be incredibly life-changing.”

On November 10, the girls will be doing a presentation at House of Breakthrough Oamaru about their experiences.

By Rebecca Ryan