Before my first trip to Congo I would reach overwhelm at the sheer numbers of orphans. I would then focus on little dresses I’d purchased at thrift stores. (See Blog Pretty LIttle Dresses) Once I’d perfected them, I’d hang them over my bed to admire my work and feel a small sense of achievement in the face of so much need. Anyone who gets involved in this work must quickly face the challenge of maintaining motivation when success only happens in the smallest increments.
Rwese orphanage managed by REACH Italia has lost its main benefactor, Mr. Romano. He recently died in his nineties after building shelter, and funding food and medicine for these children of war. Now, it’s falling to me to take his place. At times it’s frightening but I will stand up and push back against the impulse to run. The two most urgent needs are clean drinking water and food. The children drink contaminated water and so are often sick with parasite and bacteria related illness. This was recently fatal to a child that I had met and photographed 3 days earlier. Children under five years old do not have the strength to withstand these conditions and parish in numbers difficult to fathom. They have also lost their sponsor for food so I’m soliciting donations, sponsors and volunteers to accompany me on my next upcoming trip.