Sunday, November 27, 2011

Davis, joy and hope

Just returned from my 9 day trip to Tanzania......the place I lived from Sept 2006-Nov 2008, the place where I met my husband, the place that will always have a piece of my heart, the place where nature's beauty moves me, the place where at one moment I can witness something so heartbreaking that I don't know what to do and the next moment witness something so inspiring that I then figure it out.

Above is a picture of Davis (the one on the back of the bike). When Davis was first taken into the Olive Branch for Children's care he was almost 2 years old but could not walk, crawl or speak. Davis was extremely malnourished and near death. My friend Deb, who runs the Olive Branch for Children, took him in and months later he was walking/talking. Later we realized he had a learning disability. In Tanzania there are not many options for people living with a disability....and few schools able to help. Visiting doctors from the West think he's autistic.

3 years later Davis is developing well. The whole time I was there I never saw him not smiling. He would follow me around bringing a smile to my face each time. He is no longer shy and can carry on simple conversation....he still has his moments (like toilet accidents and walking around with no underwear)....but he's making great progress and bringing joy to everyone he meets.

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