|Here our team is singing songs with the kids|
Typically in summer there are several elders of the neighborhood who sit outside my main door, keeping an eye on the neighborhood, sort of like like a "Neighborhood Watch" program organized by themselves. They keep watch over the kids in the neighborhood while the parents aren't around. So basically, if you get on their bad side, you are in deep waters. The other day I came out my main door to join the rest of the team outside with the kids and found a distraught mother of one of the kids from the neighborhood looking to make a fuss. She came straight to me and started yelling at me, asking where we came from, what we're doing, and why kids from families need "free handouts" and why we need to play with them, since they have parents. That's when our "Neighborhood Watch" ladies piped in. They were beside themselves at the nerve of this woman. They said, "Look at all these 70+ kids in the playground right now. Tell us where their parents are! They are all over there at the bar or in their apartments getting drunk and/or stoned while their kids roam free outside, without someone to watch over and care for them, let alone play with them! They are neglected. Yet these wonderful Americans travel half way around the world to play with them and hand out gifts to them. They are taking care of our children because our people are too apathetic to do so themselves." I was beside myself. The ladies looked at me with a smile. "Don't pay attention to this woman, or any others like her who complain about what you do. We have no problem with it. You are doing a good thing." I was so very thankful and encouraged immensely.
|When you want a picture with one, you get a picture with them all|
Speaking of parents who were encouraging, one even wanted to take a picture with her daughter and me together. Here is that picture...