A mother walked into one of our Community Care Centers feeling defeated and worn out with the immense challenges involved in raising her child with Down syndrome. She even confided to one of our staff members that she was planning to make the heartbreaking decision to drop her 2 1/2 year old daughter off at an orphanage on the way home. Her daughter was failing to thrive, weighing only 13.4 lbs. She wouldn’t put any weight on her legs at all, and mom had little hope for change. Her husband had left her (and their 5 children) around the time this baby was born, and mom has no job or means to pay rent, buy food and basic living needs, or pay school fees for her children. Like so many moms in her situation, she didn’t see any other path forward than to take her daughter to an orphanage.
Raising a child, even in the best of circumstances, can feel like a challenging task. When the child has an intellectual disability, the challenges can be simply overwhelming. Pair that with a lack of support from family and friends because of the cultural perception of disability, and it can feel impossible for many parents and caregivers to face the next day. This is why Special Hope exists, to bring real and tangible hope.
With feeding, nutritional, and medical help and support from our Special Hope staff, this mother received encouragement, advice, and practical tools, to help her take care of her little girl. Because of this compassion, love, and practical support, 2 1/2 year old Ebenezer will grow up at home, together with her mom.
The name Ebenezer means “to commemorate God’s help.” Our prayer is that Ebenezer’s story will be a reminder to you of the help and hope that God can bring, even in the midst of a seemingly impossible situation. Thank you for your generosity that is changing lives like Ebenezer’s and her mom’s life each day through Special Hope Network.
[Pictured above: Ebenezer in March 2022]