Our sponsor child Jenie, turned eight in July. We sent her some money as a birthday gift and we got back these pictures showing us what Jenie bought.
Jenie and her family lost their home when they were unable to pay the rent. Currently they live under a bridge in Manila. (I'll talk more about this in another post - suffice it to say that it makes these pictures of a sweet little girl enjoying her birthday gifts all the more poignant and precious to me.)
This is my favorite picture. Jenie is so happy showing off her new galoshes. Manila can be very rainy and she previously had no rain gear. Jenny also got a raincoat and an umbrella. Her mother said Jenie was especially happy to get the rain gear because now she would be able to go outside to play even when it rained. The family also chose to spend some of their gift money on food.
How sweet is this? Jenie got a little plastic tea set! Every girl deserves a little tea set don't you think? Jenie is one of my daughter's special sponsor kids and my daughter was so delighted when she saw the tea set. :)
And here is Jenie with all her birthday loot. She got lots of clothing items, a new backpack, some school supplies as well as a few toys. We were told it was the first time she had ever been to a store and was able to choose items for herself. I'm so happy that we were able to give her that experience!
Jenie is quite shy. We were told by the field worker who took the family shopping that Jenie was so overwhelmed by the whole thing that all she could say was "thank you very much" over and over.
My hope is that Jenie will stay in the Children International Program and that we will have a long journey together over the years until she graduates. I hope we are able to help Jenie and her family to improve their circumstances during that time. I admit that it feels a little bit overwhelming to me - how am I, half a world away, going to be able to help this family to get out from under that bridge and into a proper, safe home? All I know is that allowing this situation to continue is an intolerable thought and I will certainly do all that I can to help, whatever that may be.