Sunday, July 14, 2013

Ethiopia - Day Five

July 4, 2013

Korah - a place also known as the trash dump community - is home to some 120,000 people. A place that is so littered with poverty that without seeing it with your own eyes you could never fully grasp it. Yet it is also a place that is riddled with love, hope and joy over the promise of a new day. The people are overjoyed to see Americans come because they know they will get fed today.

Children line the mud/dirt roads, grab my hand without hesitation and then shoot me a huge grin when I look to see who's hand is in mine. They want to have their picture taken and then giggle hysterically when I show it to them. They pose endlessly for their photo ops. They are excited to lead me through their corridor alleys and into the homes we are visiting. They wait patiently as we go in to minister to, pray for, and form relationships with the locals.

They wear sandals and flip flops and act like it's nothing as their feet sink in the mud. I, on the other hand, cringe as my shoe goes all the way down. I avoid the puddles that the down pours have left while they walk - almost skillfully - through them. They take great care to help me avoid the puddles and mud-holes as they escort me through Korah and I feel ashamed of myself for not carrying them. They feel pride though to show me around.

One family in particular stole my and David's hearts. A young mom with three children; two boys and one girl. She showed us her mud-hut - literally the only thing in it was a "mattress" that was a little shorter than a twin size and maybe slightly wider. It was for the WHOLE family to sleep on. There was also a small bench maybe one foot wide. A single lightbulb hung in the back of the room. The whole room/house was 8'x12'...smaller than my children's bedrooms.

I saw no blankets, no toys, no sink, no food, no nothing! My heart cringed. We gave the kids a few granola bars, 3 tootsie pops and 2 matchbox cars. You would have thought we had just handed them a million bucks. We also committed right then to becoming their sponsors. For $50/month we will be able to send the kids to school, pay their rent, and ensure they are fed. This is truly life changing. The mother was overjoyed and kept hugging and kissing me as did the 10 year old girl. I was humbled as joy flooded my soul.

We made several other home visits and heard stories that would break your heart. Leprosy, blindness and people relying on the trash dump as their food source. There were several families who were not sponsored while we were there and desperately need one. If you are interested, please know that your donation of $50/month will go towards that particular family's most pressing needs - usually rent, medication, and food. All of the money goes through the local church in Korah so that there is accountability with it. You can be sure that your money is going to what it is supposed to. Please check out www.ordinaryhero.org in a few weeks to see who needs sponsorship and see a little of their stories.



Precious boys inside the church in Korah



Our friend, Lincoln loving on a Korah kid


Ryan playing with this little one


Gathering outside to share stories and show love


Inside the church in Korah


Kelly (founder of OH) with Pastor Tesfaye


Our sweet Temesgen with Bira and Teddy who were amazing translators for us!


Aaaaah!!!! Our amazing sponsor family. Look at the beauty in 
their faces. I'm so blessed to be part of their lives!


LOVE - Mesrtbekla, Negst, Yohannes, Pedros - our new family


Teaching Yohannes how to play "fives"


Oh sweet boy! Through sponsorship this boy is now another son of mine. Love him.


Sweet girl. Can't wait until the day she and Chloe can play together.


From one mom to another.... no words are even needed.


Our boys Yohannes and Pedros playing with their new matchbox
cars on their bed. PRESH!!!


Another hug


Our friend Skylar hanging with these awesome boys. 


A typical looking home. The sticks are one home and the mud wall is another.


Darling little one who asked to have her picture made and
 then gave me those precious puppy dog eyes.


Besties! Love how the little girl in the Hello Kitty nightgown can hardly
stifle her giggle long enough for the picture to take.


David with Teddy - this young man is going to make a 
huge difference in the world. Just watch!!!


This precious lady needs a sponsor! She has leprosy and was crying because of the pain she was experiencing. She has a 20 year old and a 12 year old and can't afford her medicine, can't walk because of her disease, and has no money for food. As we were leaving her house, she was the one blessing us and telling us that God is faithful. 
Please consider helping her out through sponsorship.


My girl, Negst (which means king) with her little friend.


Beverly with these adorable Korah kiddos


After leaving Korah, we went to the post office for shopping. This is the touristy type souvenir section of Addis. We found soccer balls for the kids and that was about it. We also did spring for a pack of gum from a street kid just so she would stop asking us. That was one thing that is very interesting about the post office...there were children everywhere going up to adults and asking us to buy their products. Clearly the shop owners don't appreciate this as it takes away from their businesses, but my gracious I have never seen anything like what I am about to describe...

The children selling things were chased away from us by two security guards who walked around carrying big sticks. These sticks were used to hit the kids without hesitation if they didn't get away fast enough. I even saw the female security guard hit a woman carrying a child!!! I was livid and it made me sick to see this. For the most part, these kids are living on the streets, have no family and are just trying to get enough money to eat. As we were driving off, several people in our van handed out some money and food to the kids and while it won't last long, at least it was something. 

2 comments:

  1. My word, we have it so good in our 'first world country' and forget EVERY DAY!

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  2. You remind me of our mission time in Tanzania. Some of the widows we visited were so poor that they were too shy to come see us. Why? They only had rags that didn't cover their 'modesty' Their feet were so calloused and thick from no shoes. Ahh, the poverty on this continent is terrible beyond imagination.

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