The Opportunity to Give

By Vanessa Kornelsen, SLCH Caregiver

On March 31, 2021, my dream of working at a Children's Home became a reality! I made a commitment to be here for three months, serving as a general assistant. Little did I know that in only twelve days, I would be asked to take five children, (four sisters, ages 6-15 & a 10-month-old boy) into my care. I quickly learned to love my new role and kept busy with household jobs like cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry, as well as running into town for doctor/dentist appointments with my children.

A few favorite things to do with my 14 & 15-year-old girls was chatting over a cup of iced coffee after they came back from school, coloring/painting, and making teething chains to sell, which both gave them some money to add to their savings account, and also a little bit of cash to donate to the home. Victoria (8) and Angelica (6) enjoyed table games, as well as savoring a night lunch of mangoes peppered with tajin while I read them a bedtime story. It's been a joy watching Liam, now 15 months old, learn to walk and start to talk. His smiles have the potential to brighten anyone's day.

I  quickly learned that taking care of insecure children comes with immense challenges! Balancing affectionate love and firm love is one of them. I fully depend on wisdom from above! I want to thank everyone who has prayed for me while I serve here.

As mentioned before, life here does get pretty challenging at times, but it's also been so very rewarding. One of the girls was having problems going to sleep in the evening because of fear. Eventually, but slowly, she opened up about her childhood fears, spilling everything out.  This is just one of the many rewards I experienced.

It is a joy and honor working with the team here at SLCH! It means the world to me to know that I can find caring hearts, listening ears, and helping hands when I need them.

Caring for children...

is messy,

and challenging,

and chaotic,

and sleepless,

and giving,

and unbelievably beautiful!

"Love isn't what I have the opportunity to get from this world. Love is what I have the opportunity to give."