Meet Chanita! She’s pint-sized (on a very generous scale) with a big personality. She’s often eating lollipops at 9:30 in the morning. She has a contagious giggle and an amazingly short attention span. Her hobbies include fitting into tiny spaces, cheating at board games, and running away from chores. For a few hours every Wednesday and Friday, she has the freedom to be a normal, carefree nine year old at CRECER.
It’s sometimes hard for me to remember that every night she is on the street begging for money to support her family of 10, including her pregnant mother. In her nine short years of life, she has witnessed and experienced things that no child should. These experiences have made her strong, determined, and understandably guarded. After hanging out with her on the street for over a year, she was one of the first girls to join CRECER and spent the first two months doing things on her terms and her schedule. Overseeing her was physically and emotionally draining. We needed one person solely responsible for Chanita and one person for the other girls. We would pour love and time and energy into trying to keep her entertained and motivated, only to receive (at best) apathy.
Which is why this picture means so, so much to me:
Last week, I snapped this picture of Chanita and Franklin and realized that slowly but surely, we are breaking down her walls. She is letting us tip toe into her world and do life alongside her. It’s incredible to be able to see her become more comfortable in CRECER and to see her realize that she is allowed to be nine years old and take a nap after an intense game of marbles. For a few hours a day, she knows she can forget about her adult, family-supporting responsibilities.
Above almost everything else, children need to feel loved. They need to feel like they matter and they need to feel accepted. There was no way Chanita could participate in activities or adhere to the rules if she didn’t first feel respected and loved. So we let her do what she needed to do (you know, within reason. She wasn’t running around stabbing people or anything.) in order to feel that way.
I know that, even though we’ve made progress, we can’t sit back and say, “Chanita? Check! Our work is done!” I know that she will need continuous love and attention, as do the other nine CRECER kids. And as much love as I have for these kids, I can’t do it alone.
This is where you, yes YOU!, come in! Every single one of these kids deserves to feel chosen and loved. They deserve to have a special person who wants to enter their world and do life alongside them. Which is why we, The Children’s Home Project, are officially expanding our sponsorship program to include the special, wonderful, and adorable kids of Proyecto CRECER!!!! For $35/month, you, yes YOU!, can be the godmother or godfather of one of these amazing kids.
Are you willing to help us give these kids the best possible care? Are you interested in receiving pictures, letters, and updates from your chosen child? Do you want to help him or her feel chosen and loved? Do you also eat lollipops at 9:30 in the morning or cheat at board games? (This is a judgment-free zone.) Sponsor tiny and spunky Chanita! Click here to sign up and fill out the sponsorship form!
If you have ANY questions or want to know more about any of these kids, email me! at firstname.lastname@example.org. Seriously, I love any excuse to brag and ooh and aah about them.