"The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera." - Dorothea Lange

Wednesday, April 07, 2010


Every now and then, a very special young person steps forward and decides - all on his or her own - to find a way to help the children at the orphanage. Meet six-year-old Helena.

The following was written by Helena's mom, Shana, who (along with her husband) had committed to providing school fees for two orphans, Rosemary and Vincent - children who began their lives at St. Mary Kevin's several months ago (thanks to an assist from Anna!) Read the story about the two children here.

"I wanted to explain to my children why we decided to help two orphans, Rosemary and Vincent, who now live at St. Mary Kevin Orphanage and decided the best way was to show them the Change the Truth video from the website. Helena (age 6) and Jack (age 5) were riveted by the video. After it was over, Helena commented on how the kids put themselves to bed every night. This really hit home for all of us...little children putting themselves to bed. In our family, nighttime rituals are so important, and to be a little one without mom's and dad's hugs and kisses at night... almost too difficult to think about.

After the video, I showed them photographs of Rosemary and Vincent. When seeing the beautiful photo of Vincent, my son asked, ‘Why is he smiling?’ It was a wonderful opportunity for me to explain that joy can be found everywhere and that one does not need much in the way of things in order to be happy.

I explained that as a family we are going to help Rosemary and Vincent so they can go to school... we are going to make a difference in their lives. We talked about ways to raise money for Rosemary, Vincent, and other children in Uganda, and she decided she wanted to do a fundraiser of her own. She would sell drawings for $1 apiece.

Next, she emptied out the ‘give’ section of her piggy bank into a glass we designated for Rosemary and Vincent. Then, she declared she would tell her class about the orphans in Uganda on the next ‘share day.’ Twenty minutes later, she announced she was having a meeting with her best friends in the front yard. Shortly after the meeting began, I had the second showing of the CTT video... this time for four kids rather than just two. When the video ended, the best friends went home and came back with their precious piggy bank loot.

I guess one can clearly see she is a girl of action. She takes her ideas and runs... no FLIES with them. And, I am proud of her.

The first draft of her fundraiser flyers has been completed, and she has decided she would like to put them up at the parks in town. Not sure where the flyers will end up, but I will get some distributed! I want her to know that her efforts matter and that she can make a difference."

- Shana

Inspiring, yes?

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