I’ve been to El Salvador many times. Monday is always my favorite day because that’s the day that we work with the most peipywirg special needs.
We are a very small team this week, and we invited another team that’s in El Salvador to join us. They are with the World Race. They have been in like 7 countries in the last 9 months, and will visit 2 more before heading home to their prospective homes in the US. They are a great group of 7 people and we work well together.
This was a typical Monday, except for the rain. It seemed never ending. Our outdoor dance party was confined to a small, dark breezeway, but even the rain could not dampen our spirits, nor that of our friends!
While we were waiting for our friends to make their way to the alternate dance party site, we asked to go visit the "kids at the houses where their disabilities are so severe that the party would not even be possible.
The people in the more severe areas seem to rarely gett visitors. We held hands with them and sang to them. Some of these precious ones live behind bars because they are dangerous to themselves or others. Some are tied to chairs or windows because they run off otherwise, and some have their arms tied to their wheel chairs for a variety of reasons.
While it may sound cruel to tie them up, or to keep innocent handicapped adults behind bars, the workers don’t have much choice, because they often have one worker in a building alone with 7or 8 people with very complicated special needs. We talked when we left about how difficult those workers jobs must be! God must create very special people for their kind of job!
We hated saying "bye" to our friends at San Martin, but our hiosys try to keep us on a schedule ( even though time and traffic signs are mere suggestions here)!
We had lunch at the States Diner, which is the brain child of Kurt Ackermann. The diner was designed and runs for the purposes of giving kids who are fresh out of orphanages, a place to earn money, and even more importantly, learn a trade that will get them a better paying job in the future.
Next we went to a children’s orphanage for kids with special needs and perfectly normal (if there is such a thing) teens who are HIV positive and have Some of the kids are blind, some have Downs Syndrome, some are deaf or are in wheel chairs. Some of the kids have severe mental delays or afflictions.
We celebrated "Day of the Child" with these children. This is a day that typically parents celebrate their children. Most of these children were either separated from their parents by death or by parents choice, therefore no one to celebrate them. We had a clown, cake, a dancing party (which included wheel chair dancing) and we played lots of games. It was great seeing the two teams come together with so many diverse gifts and quickly find children who needed those gifts that day!
Despite the rain, we had a great day, and those of us visiting (even for the 56th time) learned more and take more away more from today than those who we were here to serve!