Casa Vida is a very generous project. It keeps, takes care and gives a future to sexually abused young girls in Timor-Leste. I think now it has over 40 girls and around 10 of them are pregnant or already had their baby, Casa Vida also takes care of the babies. Casa Vida's money comes partly from it's owner Simone Assis but most of it comes from their restaurant Cafe Aroma and of course from the donations. Cafe Aroma serves delicious food and also traditional Brazilian food. The restaurant's profits are in benefit of Casa Vida. Cafe Aroma is also a place to coach the Casa Vida girls and to guarantee them a future with jobs. At the start, Cafe Aroma was in a very small place with a very little kitchen. But after some months of serving their delicious food and some very kind donations from other people, Simone was able to buy a much bigger place that could bring more customers in. The old Cafe Aroma is now the house of the Casa Vida girls. My mum and my friends have been working really hard to keep Cafe Aroma running smooth. It has been really good helping them and definitely hope to keep it going.
But on Tuesday 14th December, my parents and i decided to visit our friends in their houses at Lecidere. When we got there at around 8:30pm we were just having a chat with some coffee. But then we hear the sound a of a little bell outside. My friend thought it was her nephew pulling a prank so she opened the door quickly so she could scare him. Then we saw something that caught us completely of guard, it was Cafe Aroma's chef, dressed in a Santa costume, then when we look into the parking lot, we see all the 40 Casa Vida girls in lines all dresses up with little Santa hats singing Christmas songs in Portuguese, English and Tetun. They sang over 15 minutes, while my mum and my friend were were so happy the were crying non stop. After all the beautiful singing, one of the Casa Vida girls gave a very kind speech thanking us for all our help. They gave my mum and my friend a very beautiful necklace and a thank you card. Then Simone came and explained how all of the girls got there. They were originally going to my friend's house first then go to my house (which is about 30 minutes away from Casa Vida!) which was going to be a disaster because one of the cars taking them there broke down and they had to walk. So if we weren't there we would have missed that beautiful performance. I was in shock after the presentation. It was all just so beautiful and breath-taking! I don't think that ever happened in Timor before. And that's why we are so lucky to have that privilege.
Now that's what Christmas is all about, Giving Thanking and Sharing! Thank You Casa Vida for the performance. Truly a day i'll never forget. :)