Friday, June 3, 2011

a little known place

There is a little known place at the back of the Kaziba hospital, next to the orphanage.  There is a door next to a wooden fence.  It's not labeled.  You could easily walk by it, miss it.  I first visited the orphanage in Feb. 2010, and it wasn't until December of that year that someone thought to bring me to visit the children that lived in three rooms behind that overlooked door.  It is a boarding facility for kids with disabilities.  Eleven to fifteen children live there year round.  They are ages 2 to 16.  Their families didn't know how to care for them, so they were brought here.  They receive rudimentary physical therapy.  They have a very dedicated older man who was thrilled to introduce me to the children and show off what they could do.  They don't have regular mamas that care for them.  They are often left alone.  To me it struck me as a dismal and depressing place.  Three rooms.  All concrete, no color or warmth.  There was little to nothing in any of the rooms.  The main room was long and narrow.  It had bars and other old equipment (or hand made equipment).  They told me that there were 100s of kids with handicaps in the surrounding villages that would come for day therapy.  

The children are beautiful and humbled me by their simple joy in the midst of the poverty of their physical surroundings.  I know I have to get the support for the orphanage up and running before starting other projects, but I would love for this small hidden center to be one of our next projects.  One day.  For now I just ask them what their needs are and wait.  I have a friend who is doing amazing work with children who have disabilities in Kenya.  Check her work out, she is inspiring!

Some of the children...

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