Kevin Rahill


Kevin Rahill

Hi everyone, I am spending a year volunteering for Open Arms Home for Children in South Africa. There, I will help teach as well as help take care of 51 children on a day to day basis. I am hoping that this blog will help me keep in touch with everyone back home.

If you want to learn more about Open Arms Home and its mission please visit:

And please feel free to email me at:

Hopefully I hear from all of you soon!

Africa » Swaziland » Mbabane May 5th 2013

As an important note: At the end of July, I will be climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro in Late July in an effort to raise funds for Open Arms Home for Children. Please look at my fundraising website at: I hope to raise $1 for every foot I climb: 19,341 feet = $19,341. Please consider sponsoring a part of my climb up the mountain!! As I write this I am currently 10% of the way there! Lets get to 100% Our days at Open Arms are more filled now than ever with preparing the kids for school at 6:30am and teaching from 8:30-2 pm. In the late afternoon while there is no set schedule; there is always something else to do whether it is to pick up milk at the dairy farm, help kids with homework, paint, ... read more
Swazi Men
Swazi Youth

Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » East London March 18th 2013

Autumn is starting to ominously drudge its way into life at Komga. Sunrise is no longer at 5am and the days are noticeably shorter. When you are at an altitude of about 1/2 a mile that means cold, crisp morning air that then dissipates as the afternoon sun heats up the climate. The nights as well are beginning to cool as we can no longer sit outside comfortably with a cup of tea gazing at the sky in a t-shirt and shorts. However, the brisk night sky is clearer than anything I have ever seen as sometimes I feel I can reach out and pluck a star into the palm of my hand from the sky. With no central heating, the only way to stay warm is wearing layer upon layer of shirt, short, sweatpants and ... read more
Pat on the Back
Williamson's Mascot

North America » United States » Florida » Miami February 9th 2013

As soon as Christmas here was over, I began my journey towards Cape Town. I spent a couple days surfing, body surfing and boogie boarding in Jeffrey's Bay which had some awesome 8 foot waves. I quickly realized that surfing is extremely hard but I was pretty pumped to be able to catch a couple nice waves and ride them into the shore on my second day. After J-Bay, I headed straight into Cape Town. The total time I spent on a bus to get from Komga to Cape Town ended up taking me over 24 hours since the bus service stopped at every single little town along the Garden Coast. I spent most of the time reading The Covenant by James Michner (Thanks to Uncle Dudley for giving me that book - probably the best ... read more

Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » East London December 25th 2012

First off, Merry Christmas to everyone! I don't have much time as I leave to start my little holiday trip in less than an hour. The last few days have been quite fun for us here at Open Arms. Father Christmas was a little late coming in last night but thankfully he made it and as the kids ran into Emmanuel Hall for chocolate chip pancakes this morning, all the presents and stockings were there. In addition to the presents provided by Father Christmas, the East London Rotary Club also presented each child with a gift. We gave the Rotary Club a little insight into each child so everyone was really happy with their gifts! Instead of writing all of the children's reactions, I decided to include a bunch of pictures of today's events. We all ... read more

Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » East London December 12th 2012

First, as it is nearing Christmas time I thought I would ask everyone to consider a donation to Open Arms. As you have read in my past few blogs, it is a really special place with many special children. We are committed to guiding these 51 kids to reaching their fullest potential and that is impossible without your assistance as Open Arms Home for Children is totally dependent upon donations from individuals in the United States. Please take a moment to look at our website and consider donating any amount! If every person who reads this blog donates $20, we would be able to pay a whole year’s worth of schooling for one child! It’s that easy to make a difference. And most importantly, I am currently here to witness that all of that money goes ... read more

Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » Cintza November 11th 2012

Hello Everyone, I hope Sandy didn’t hurt anyone too bad and that all is well! So far here we have not had any terrible storms but rather rain almost every day. In fact, this morning (Thursday morning when I started writing this blog) as I opened up our kitchen and dining facilities at 5:30 am, the fog was so thick I could barely see in front of me. As I opened up the doors to the dining hall, I literally saw wisps of clouds float into our Emmanuel Hall. I stood there in awe as a little puffy cloud leisurely hovered past me then slowly dissipated into the air. We are quite elevated here at Open Arms and it is quite common to wake up in the morning to walk out your door into the middle ... read more

Africa » South Africa » KwaZulu-Natal » Durban » Durban North October 22nd 2012

For this blog I don’t know where to start my friends. I hate to leave some things out but alas sometimes I have to. I shall start upon my golfing adventure with my dear friend and fellow volunteer Dudley. The previous night we had spent a long night at the Komga Club, a famous spot in Komga known for its prolific braai (barbecue) as well as its occasional late nights of “celebration.” Lucky for us our night was quite a “celebration” as Anne, Dudley and I did not arrive home until about midnight which for us is quite a night. Sunday was a typical morning, waking up at about 8 am to eat scones and prepare for church. After church, Anne, Margaret, Jeff and Suzanne went off to the beach for lunch while Dudley and I ... read more
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Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » East London October 1st 2012

I feel so much has happened since my last update! First off I now have a new roommate named Uncle Dudley who derives from Phoenix, Arizona. Dudley was superintendent of six Phoenix high schools for 5 years after a very successful career as an assistant superintendent, principle, athletic director and history teacher. He will be my roommate for the next two months as he helps Open Arms develop a plan for home schooling our children. It will be a laborious endeavor as homeschooling about 17 children properly will require much foresight and planning. Personally, I am very happy that Dudley has arrived as its good to have a guy volunteer to hang with during the days. We have already had discussions pertaining to education issues in the United States along with other philosophical tops each night ... read more
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Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » East London September 19th 2012

Something I have realized quickly about Africa is that something is always burning. Every night since I have arrived there has been a visible grassfire in the distance. In fact, last week there was a large brush fire that came close to Open Arms and resulted in us having to cancel a trip to the beach for lunch on a Saturday afternoon. That fire was actually quite scary as it covered the hillside near Open Arms. The fire traveled several miles as the next day I could see the trail of ash across the farmland below us. The brush fires are unlike those in the US. They are very slow moving and according to the Komga citizens do not burn down the houses. Still, when I hear the crackling of wood and smoke rising in the ... read more

Africa » South Africa » Eastern Cape » East London September 6th 2012

Hello everyone, It has been a while since my birthday but there is rarely time in the day to have access to a computer unless I stay up late (which for me is past about 10 pm now). First of all I had a fantastic 23rd birthday! Thanks to everyone who sent me emails or cards in the mail! I will hopefully be able to respond to everyone's emails by the end of this weekend. The day started off normal as I made sure all of my kids got to school. After which I went to East London for the day. Driving to East London from Komga is said to be the most dangerous highway in South Africa which is saying a lot. I will soon be driving there on my own now that I have ... read more

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