Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sierra Leone (two)

Hosetta School…

While there, we spent 7 days working at the Hosetta School. About half of the kids there were deaf, and the other half mentally challenged. The culture there does not promote the idea that children are a treasure, and if they are a challenge, they are surely treated as the lowest of the low. We were able to not only take school supplies, but also spend time in the classrooms there, introducing their teachers to some new concepts & ways of teaching. The administrator & teachers were overwhelmed with all we came & shared. It was so wonderful to meet that need. And, all the while, enjoying loving on those kids.

Watching them put together puzzles, and play with play dough for the first time was such a moving experience.



I love this one – Aminata (2nd girl from Left is so thrilled to be doing whatever it is we were doing, and the boy in the middle there is looking like, “What? More of this?!”


This is Abdul Ramon. I could have eaten him up with a spoon. Precious.  One morning, he tried to wipe/scrape/scratch the moles off of my arms. He could not figure out why they would not come off.


Below is a picture of Edna. She did not have much to say.  But her smile would make my day.


And by the time we left, when I said, “How do you spell Edna?” She would say, “E-D-N-A.”


And then there was Cynthia.  She didn’t have much to say, either, but I so fell in love with this girl! When we gave the students play dough, & a folder with shapes, we showed them how to form the play dough into the shapes that were on the folders.  I worked with her & worked with her, and after about 20 minutes, she did form the play dough into a circle.


The second day we were there, she gave me a coin. I tried & tried to give it back to her, but she shook her head no & would not take it back. I asked Becky about it that night, and she guessed that the coin was Cynthia’s money for bread that day.  She said for me to take it, that the coin was the only thing Cynthia had to give.  She gave me another coin the next day.  I went in the bathroom & cried.

The picture below is of me dancing with Cynthia on our last day.  You can see Edna on the right & Aminata on the left.


Susan, the administrator at Hosetta, loved the chocolate & lipstick I brought to her, so she had a dress made for me as a gift.  She was so funny putting that head dress on me – she did not quite know what to do with ALL of my hair!


It’s amazing how quickly I could fall in love with a place & those children. The smiles, the hugs, and small victories they gained will forever be in my memory.

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