A Language We All Share

When adoptive mom Cindy Lamb visits with students at the Yesus Mena Deaf School in Ethiopia, her fluency in sign language helps her communicate. But it’s another language that creates the most soulful connection. 

This past October, my husband, Steve, and I had the rare privilege of participating in the perfect intersection of a lifetime of interests and passions when we traveled to Ethiopia on a medical mission trip with Holt.  Holt helped build and still supports Shinshicho Primary Hospital and also supports Yesus Mena Deaf School in the same town. Steve is a family practice physician and I am an RN with a graduate degree in deaf education. Twenty-two years ago, we adopted a 4-year-old daughter through Holt who is deaf. So, when we were asked to participate in a medical mission trip to Shinshicho with an opportunity to also be involved with the deaf school, we were immediately determined to be a part of the adventure. Continue reading “A Language We All Share”

Their World Has Opened Up, Because of You

In southern Ethiopia, in a town called Shinshicho, there is a special school where children from all over the region come to study. Some walk up to six miles every day just so they can learn there.

It is the only school for deaf children in a community of over 250,000 people — a community that also happens to have the highest rate of deafness in all of Ethiopia.

Six years ago, the deaf children of this region had no school to go to, no teachers to teach them, no knowledge of sign language — or even an awareness that a language existed for those who could not hear. Without a way to communicate with the outside world, they lived lives of loneliness and isolation — completely unable to express their intelligent thoughts and complex emotions even with their own families. They were barely recognized as human.

But when the Yesus Mena School for the Deaf opened in Shinshicho, suddenly a world of possibility also opened up for these children. Today, with the support of Holt sponsors like you, 395 students who are deaf or partially hearing are finally receiving the sign-language-based education they need and deserve.

The video above tells the story of one boy at Yesus Mena who, with the support of his sponsors, can finally share what he was holding inside, all along.

Thank you for all you do for your sponsored child. Wherever they live, whatever their struggle, your sponsorship has opened a world of possibility in their life.

Shinshicho Hospital Update (Photos), Spring 2014

The hospital is really taking form! Check out the progress to the surgical wings, patient wards and outside appearance of the building. When this hospital opens in summer 2014, more than 250,000 people will have access to advanced healthcare for the first time!

 

At the end of March, more than two tons of medical equipment arrived at the Holt-funded maternal and child hospital in Shinshicho Continue reading “Shinshicho Hospital Update (Photos), Spring 2014”