That’s what SHE said: #lovehope Ethiopia edition with Jen Hatmaker, Korie Robertson, and Jillian Lauren.

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I’m in Ethiopia this week with Help One Now, hearing stories of how their work is preventing the tragedy of poverty orphans. I thought that for this week’s picks, I would share some of the writing of the other women on this trip. I hope you will take the time to click through and read their essays. It’s powerful and heartbreaking, and yet there is redemption.

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

 

Love Hope | Jillian Lauren

Our adoption gave us more than the family we were longing for; it also allowed us to experience our interconnectedness with people halfway around the globe, the permeability of the membranes between our lives. Since then, Scott and I have been trying to finagle a return trip. We often wonder- what can we do to work toward a world in which children are not orphaned by poverty? The answers are not always easy. Like a lot of people, we are sometimes overwhelmed and confused by the choices. How can we do the most good in a conscious and respectful way? Is there something we can do beyond writing a check? Is there some greater understanding we can gain, some more immediate action we can take?

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

 

10-Year-Olds Should Not Be Day Laborers | Jen Hatmaker

When her children were chosen to be sponsored by Help One Now, she was dying. Her children were considered the most vulnerable. She is HIV Positive and was very sick at the time. She didn’t have access to the important Anti-Retro Viral medication that can make an HIV patient healthy again. Her family, which consisted of herself and her six children, had no cow or chicken or garden to sustain them. She was too sick to have a job – where would she find one anyway? She was forced to leave two of her children at an orphanage because they were sick as well, and she had no way to care for them.

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

A Story Of Opportunity, Restoration, Triumph And Hope | Korie Robertson

When her children were chosen to be sponsored by Help One Now, she was dying. Her children were considered the most vulnerable. She is HIV Positive and was very sick at the time. She didn’t have access to the important Anti-Retro Viral medication that can make an HIV patient healthy again. Her family, which consisted of herself and her six children, had no cow or chicken or garden to sustain them. She was too sick to have a job – where would she find one anyway? She was forced to leave two of her children at an orphanage because they were sick as well, and she had no way to care for them.

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

 

The Road | Jillian Lauren

I’m going to get really real with you here. I don’t often talk about T’s origins, or the reasons he came to be with us. Tariku is a poverty orphan. Which is to say, that without the pressures of extreme poverty, he wouldn’t have suffered the trauma of separation, malnutrition, pneumonia- all the things that made his eyes so scared when we met him, his little legs hanging beneath him like skinny, limp noodles.

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

 

Your Money Can Help Or Hurt | Jen Hatmaker

Initially, HON’s mission was laser-focused on double-orphaned children (both parents deceased), but last year local Haitian leader Jean-Alix asked Chris to consider sponsoring children living in impoverished Drouin with their parents. When Chris explained that HON only focused on orphaned children, Jean-Alix said, “Oh. Okay. Then just wait one year and most of these children will be orphaned.” Thus, orphaned and vulnerable children now make up the mission of HON. Both worthy. In some cases, we respond to tragedy. In other cases, we help prevent the tragedy. Either way, children destined for orphanhood, poverty, and family disruption are empowered toward family, education, and economic sustainability. Cyclical chains are broken and the next generation is raised up to lead strong.

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

 

Again, Always: Ethiopia | Jillian Lauren

The minute we walked off the plane in Addis Ababa this morning, the distinctive smell hit me- some mysterious mixture of frankincense, burning trash, eucalyptus, coffee, and bodies. It’s profoundly human and otherworldly at the same time and lets you know unmistakably that you are in Ethiopia- this glorious and complicated place.

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

 

To read more about the trip and to sponsor a family, click here. You can also follow our hashtag on twitter and instagram at #lovehope.

Stories of how @HelpOneNow is preventing orphans. #lovehope

Photos by Ty Clark, Jacob Combs, and Scott Wade.




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