Thursday, June 23, 2011
Light of Hope
Our first day of service would be at the Light of Hope Orphanage in Zhao Xian County, south of Shijiazhuang, about a four hour drive from Beijing, China. Home to 56 children from infants to college age. We arrived at the gate and before we could even unload the children began pouring out and their excitement was infectious. We had come with new shoes & socks for every child and like any child they were very eager to help us with the packages. Kids between 2 and 8 buzzed about; we came to learn the older children were still in school and would arrive later in the evening. Some warmed up to us faster than others but I quickly gained a few friends with my camera.
En Mei a spunky young lady probably 3 years old was fascinated by her image and soon took over the camera snapping her own shots. En Mei was abandon at the orphanage with a minor cleft pallet which has now been repaired.
Andrew’s kindergarten class collected socks which I presented to Moses the director. He was very pleased as socks are always a must. Little did I know the kids would find such pleasure in tossing the bagged socks around and creating games with them.
We were taken on a tour of the orphanage and shown the construction project our previous groups had done. The kids proudly showed off their rooms.
As evening approached it was nearly time for us to leave. The middle school & high schoolers began to arrive home on their bicycles and the little ones cheered. We watched as they each received their new shoes and then they lead us to the gate and waved goodbye.