I have a lot of great news. We have started construction on the new building. Now that it has started, the first phase should be done in 8-9 months. Usually with building projects here, they give a monetary initiative to actually finish the contract in a certain time period. Hopefully this means, we will be in the new building by next Fall!
Last blog I told you about the new kids, well now we have more. I can’t even keep track of how many new ones are joining. I actually don’t have pictures of all of them, but I am working on it.
Axel is 4 years old. He is Genesis’ younger brother. He is very quiet and very shy, but a sweet kid. He usually observes the other kids playing, especially when they are playing rough. He doesn’t participate much, but has warmed up to me. Today he pops around the corner and says, “Jenny!” It surpised me, because he never talks, only occasionally smiles at me.
Jamie is a 2 year old girl. Genesis and Axel’s cousin. She is being raised by her father. It is common to see single mothers in this country and especially this community, but to see a single father is unheard of. She is very strong willed, but has a sweet side. She is very small and malnourished, and usually in my arms. Her dad said that he has seen a big difference in her behavior since she entered our program 3-4 weeks ago.
Ian is also 2 years old. Although they are not related, Bessy considers him her nephew. They live very close together and Bessy is best friends with his mom Keren. He has very light features, so they joke that he could be my kid.
Jeferson is 2 ½ years old. From what I have heard, he had a special needs brother that recently passed away. To put it nicely, Jeferson is a fighter. No one has taught him how to play or be around people. His arms are always swinging, and although he has a 2 year old temper, sometimes he is just playing. I have been working on seeing who he can play well with, so that he can learn to play with others. I try to pick him up and love on him a little at a time, and he is starting to open up and smile, without trying to swing at me.
Gabriel and Josue David are brothers, 2 ½ and 4 years old. They could not be any more different. Gabriel, the younger one, is lively and loves to eat. He always wants me to hold him. Today he walks up and says, “I love you.” (which to me was sweet because even the kids I know that love me can’t verbalize it). He is my shadow. David is the same size as Gabriel, does not like to eat anything, and is very quiet and reserved. He speaks when spoken to, but is not loud and energetic like his little brother. Usually Gabriel (the younger one) takes the food off his plate. The first week Gabriel would not enter the building, gradually we got him inside to eat, then the next day to sleep, and now he is completely adapted.
Kacy and Daniel have been in the program before, but were not regulars. Kacy is Debbie’s daughter. If you remember, Debbie is usually the lady that comes to substitute. She will be part time in the mornings teaching the kindergarten classes. Which has allowed me more time with English and the little kids.
Abel is 5 years old. He is the cousin of Heydi and Oliver. The first week, he was great and so excited about being with us. After the first week the tears came. He is a sweet kid, but around 11am starts crying for his mom. He is a great kid and outgoing.
Fauricio is 5 years old and today was his first day. He is Debbie’s nephew. I don’t know much about him or his personality, but he seems like a sweet boy.
I’m not sure if I have forgotten anyone, like I mentioned there is a new one everyday, so I have lost track of how many new kids there are. I will save the new ones for the next blog.