Walking off a red dirt path through a make-shift barricade of corrugated metal and some wood held together by a few pieces of twine, I enter a corrugated metal building as 180 children excitedly said, “Wel-come, wel-come, wel-come, wel-come” over and over. Sitting on a bench I watch in awe as a little girl that I can’t communicate verbally with because of our language barriers, as she takes my hand, looks me in the eyes and smiles.
Those are just a few of the hundreds of memories that stick with me after visiting Ethiopia and the CarePoint site in the town of Wolilso. When I was chosen to go to Ethiopia in January as a part of The Fearey Group’s CSR program I blogged about the trip and my expectations and admitted nervousness. Looking back on the trip I can tell you that the cliché of a “life-changing” experience is something that has come true.
The goal of the CarePoint site is to stabilize the community by providing foundational items and global philosophies. This has included a regular package of clothing and needed goods, as well as schooling for the children at the CarePoint site. The Fearey Group has been involved in supporting the CarePoint site since it was created and more Fearey staffers will get the chance to visit the site in person in the years to come.
I knew going in that there was far more that I could learn from this experience than I could ever provide. I’m lucky to have the privilege of living in a developed country and visiting Ethiopia revealed that though we are developed, we still have a long way to go to help our neighbors at home and around the world because we are truly a globalized society that needs to support one another.
During our visit we spent three days at the CarePoint site, playing and making crafts with the kids. We delivered care packages from their sponsors and watched with joy as they opened and played with all of the items inside. We played soccer, made noisemakers, played with balloons and painted for three full days of adventures.
I learned through the translators that the kids that visit this CarePoint have big dreams. They want to be doctors and engineers. And it was clear spending time with them that they will achieve those things and more.
But there’s still more to do and we need your help. Here’s what you can do to pitch in:
- Direct assistance for emotional, environmental, educational and medical needs.
- Letter writing between the child and you as their sponsor so you can track their progress.
- Access to the CarePoint site so they can continue to have a community place to learn, play and develop.
Singing. The pure voices of children singing and jumping around with joy. That’s the image that’s stuck in my mind of Woliso, Ethiopia. It’s a place that’s touched my life and a place that I don’t ever want to lose touch with. I hope you will consider joining in this journey and supporting the CarePoint site in whatever way you can.