It was on my second trip to the pediatric unit that I met Laura, a 6 year old with severe injuries to her pelvic region and legs. She was literally tied to the bed, with her bonds only allowing enough give for her to prop herself up a few inches on her elbows. On that first visit Laura was emotionally cold, not wishing to talk, smile or interact in any way. For some reason that little girl got to me, and over the remaining 3 weeks I made it my mission to help restore her joy.
With each visit I got a few few more smiles and I learned a little bit more about Laura. She loved to dance and had even won a beauty pageant. She proudly displayed a picture of herself wearing a princess dress and tiara on the little stand next to her bed, but then something happened. Through my broken spanish I wasn’t able to glean the exact details, but I do know that there was an accident, and that little Laura had been laying on her back in the hospital for months as she endured more surgeries and tried to recover.
While American hospitals have all sorts of programs installed to entertain kids through their ordeals, Bolivian hospitals aren’t similarly equipped. You won’t find video games or TV’s in every room, and while Cochabamba’s main hospital does have a good program aimed at helping entertain children, with volunteers, toys and games, even that program is only the most effective for children who are mobile, not children like Laura.
So, over the past two months as I’ve prepared to return to Bolivia for the long haul I started to try to think of something I could do, to help restore joy in the lives of so many children hospitalized in Cochabamba, many of whom’s parents are far to poor to pay for toys or objects of entertainment for their children, and that’s when the idea of a care pack came to me. Each care pack would contain items to help the children pass time in the hospital, from crayons and paper, to small toys and stickers, and most importantly, it would be something that the children can call their own, not something that has to be locked away in a cupboard at the end of the day.
When I fly to Bolivia this fall I would like to be able to take at least 50 of these care packs with me. It is such a blessing to be persuing this during the back to school season when so many of the supplies I need can be gained for significantly discounted prices, but even so I can not afford all of the supplies I need on my own.
So, as I continue fundraising to allow my physical self to go to Bolivia, I would like to ask if you would be willing to help in an immediately tangible way, by donating some of the supplies I need to make these care packs. Each pack will cost about $1 to put together, but it’s a gift that will be worth so much more to these children.
Here’s a list of the supplies I need:
–Crayons (Crayola or Roseart are preferred; which I will divide into small packs containing 6 crayons each)
–Ball Point Pens
–Small notebooks (anywhere from 3in to 6in; please no full size notebooks)
–Small toys such as wrapped Happy Meal toys, hot wheels or party favors etc.
–Gallon sized zip lock bags
-I would also like to put markers (skinny or fat, it doesn’t matter) in packs for older children.
So, as you shop for school supplies, or your just on next trip to Target to pick up cream cheese and shampoo, if you wouldn’t mind picking up a little something extra to help build these care packs, your donation would be greeting appreciated. And keep in mind, I’m not expecting one person to fund this whole undertaking, even a donation of one item is getting one step closer!
If you are interested in partnering with me to build these care packs please leave a comment or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you and God Bless!
And if you would like to help support me and my mission calling to Bolivia with Hospitals of Hope you can learn more my clicking here.