We hope that all is well as the Christmas holidays come to a close and a new year is just around the corner. The one thing that seems to be a constant during the holidays is a sense of home, gathering together at the homes of parents, family or friends and sharing with those who are important in our lives.
Over the years of doing this work sometimes the results are not so easy to measure. Often the outcomes seem clouded by witnessing the immense struggles and difficulties faced by so many that we cannot help. It helps to know that thousands of children drink clean water daily, thanks to KIDS water projects and feel better for it, or that many more children can read and write and that girls and young women are more safe and secure. These differences absolutely confirm that our combined efforts make a difference, however sometimes it is seeing the more intimate changes in each family that really touches our hearts.
Each week we travel out to the area where we are building homes and bathrooms for the children and families who live and work in the brick factories. Previously these families were housed in terrible shacks or rudimentary shelters in the corners of the brick factories with no sanitation facilities. Under these living conditions the despair, sadness and drudgery the families face is very hard to witness.
We see the difference in the families who have received toilets and decent housing, and it is very moving, They are now growing vegetable gardens, raising chickens, ducks, some are raising pigs and flower gardens are growing. The houses and bathrooms are clean and there is a sense of pride as they laugh and talk with us.
When we ask them how they feel their lives have improved, they say now that they live off the factory land and are no longer indentured to the factory owners they can take a day off if needed. They express a feeling of security and safety, they no longer worry that they or their children will be bitten by snakes going to the bathroom in the bushes at night...and most of all there is a sense of happiness that they did not have before. A huge thank you to Sarah Gilks and her Healthy Role Models program participants for partnering with KIDS donors to make this life changing work happen.
As you gather together at your homes to welcome the new year please know that your kindness and generosity has and continues to provide homes for others and everyone expresses a most heartfelt "Thank You" for making this possible.
From all of us here, we wish you and yours a very Happy New Year!!
Till next time,
Adrianne and Rick