As 2015 comes rapidly to a close, many media outlets are running summaries of the year. One of the things my family noticed yesterday is that so much of the reported news was about tragedy. I know many of us who are parents wonder how the continual “news of the bad” is impacting our children.
A few weeks ago, I took my kids to a major theme park in Florida, and as hundreds of families like ours were climbing aboard the tram to the main entrance, my 11-year-old looked around and said, “There isn’t enough security here. This is the perfect place for a terrorist attack.”
It hit me so strongly that this is the reality of our children’s thoughts now. They go to school and do “intruder drills” to prepare for the worst, while the internet and 24/7 news make it almost impossible to shield them from things we wish they didn’t have to see.
It would be easy to fall into the mindset that the world is completely going downhill.
Because of my job, however, I get to see the absolute goodness in people all over the world. Each day, I get to see that there are thousands of “angels on earth” who will go out of their to make sure others receive the help they need. These are the stories I want my kids to see each day. This year through LWB, for example, over 200 children were helped through our medical program alone, and the most incredible part to me is that they were helped by strangers who most likely will never meet them in person. Babies were helped like Landon, who came into our hands this past spring with a life-threatening abdominal issue needing immediate surgery. He was so very sick when his orphanage called us, and we were able to move him urgently to the hospital only because kindhearted supporters stepped up to help him.
This is Landon now over Christmas, living in our Anhui Healing Home.
Isn’t that incredible? And the reality is that the only reason he’s alive today is because of the goodness in the world. His life was saved because of people giving from their hearts, and I know without a doubt that there are exponentially more kind people in the world than bad. That’s what I want my kids to see and remember.
Every day I get to work with amazing people to make sure orphaned and impoverished children get the help they deserve, and every day we give thanks that because of your generosity we are allowed to say YES when an orphanage calls.
YES — we can help Katie from our Jinjiang orphanage school get a wheelchair and finally have mobility. How awesome is that?
YES — we can help beautiful Lola get the cleft surgery she needed so that she could be filed for adoption.
YES — we absolutely want little Matilda to be moved into a loving foster home versus growing up in institutional care. Every baby deserves a momma to love them.
We can say YES because of your kindness. We can change the lives of orphaned children because of your generosity. I fully believe that the goodness happening quietly in the world far outweighs the bad. We just don’t get the chance to hear about it very often on the evening news.
As you make resolutions for 2016, I hope you will add in an extra one to try and counter the bad we hear about each day with spreading the story of compassion and tenderness as well. Miraculous things take place when people come together to help those in need.
I am infinitely blessed to get to see love in action every single day, and I give thanks repeatedly that you allow our work to continue. The reality about a charity like LWB, where almost all of our donations come from individuals and families, is that every child healed…every child impacted…every child whose life is changed only happens because of GOODNESS.
Remind your kids about the reality of that, because there isn’t any other word for it but beauty. The world is still filled with it — we just need to remind ourselves to not let the quiet acts of mercy going on around us every day go unnoticed.
On this last day of 2015, I give thanks to each of you for supporting the mission of LWB to bring hope and healing to children in need. Together we are changing the world for the good, one child at a time.
~Amy Eldridge, Chief Executive Officer
There’s still time for a year end gift to be made! Donate today and join with us to change lives.