The Special People of El Salvador Who Stole My Heart
Blog post written by Grace Higgins Coto de Caza, California
Today we visited two special needs orphanages. In the morning we went to the orphanage for adults, where we had a tour of the facility. We were blessed to be able to do crafts and face painting with the residents and also hosted a super fun dance party. The residents loved dancing, singing and just being together with us. Some of them cried when we were leaving because they didn't want us to go. It was so humbling to see how the residents were so full of joy despite their circumstances and their smiles were contagious. My sister has special needs so I was especially touched to be able to spend time with these wonderful people.
Our team enjoyed lunch at the States Diner, a restaurant started by Sus Hijos that provides employment to teens transiting out of orphanages. Then we made our way to the children's special needs orphanage. The kids were so happy and full of life, just as we observed with the adults in the morning. I have been around special needs children my whole life. It hurts my heart to think that families are unable to care for their special children in this country due to poverty and the lack of resources. It also breaks my heart to realize that these residents are often forgotten and even discarded. I wish that the people who consider them "worthless" or "forgetten" would spend just a few hours with them so they could see the light in their eyes that I observed today. I will never forget my special friends in El Salvador.