Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Life in the Village

We have been in the village for two weeks now. Life is different. But it’s good. And it really helps me to appreciate what we have.

Just after we arrived, we took part in a local festival of more than 5000 people. Jordan made friends there with a 14 year old girl from another city.

After our meal together, this girl asked Jordan,
“Does your family have a lot of money?”

Jordan deferred the question to me.

It was an easy question, and I didn’t even have to think before I answered, “No, we don’t have a lot of money.”

And then I started thinking.

Comparatively, we do.

Here are some of the girls I was blessed to meet and to talk with at the festival. Who helped me to realize just how much we have.

A 12 year old girl (right) who may have to drop out of school to help take care of her baby brother.

An 11 year old girl (left) who lives with her deaf mute mother. She just met her father once, and  doesn’t know if he died or if he left them. Her uncle helps them with money as her mother cannot work. Her mother motioned to her as we were talking. When she came back to the group, she said that her mom wanted me to take her picture.

A 12 year old girl (right) who is still in school, and wants to continue on to high school and hopefully even college. Her 14 year old sister stays at home to cook for them and to look after their baby brother as their parents had to go to another city to find work. Their grandmother lives with them, but is unable to cook or to help with childcare.

An 11 year old girl (right) from the orphanage of a nearby city. Both of her parents died when she was 5, and while she visits her grandparents in the village, they are unable to care for her full-time. She had one of the most beautiful smiles I have ever seen, and I told her that after I showed her this picture of her.

Many children here have difficult lives. Their families do what they can to survive. Parents often have to leave the village to find work. Older children have to help take care of younger siblings. Many have to drop out of school in order to help their families. I noticed a sign on a building as we were out walking the other day that said, “Finish junior high before you go out to find work.”

I'm touched by these faces. And the stories behind them. Realizing how much we have, in comparison. It is so easy to take our many opportunities for granted.

Until we see those without.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks, Rachel. I've enjoyed following your blog and reading about your experiences too!



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