This past January I was given the opportunity of a lifetime to travel across the world to North India. I’d always heard of India, enticed by their delicious cuisine and beautifully colored garments but I had never added it to my list of travel destinations. It seems palm trees and clear blue waters had claimed their rightful positions on my top five list. It wasn’t until Courtney established One Life to Love in India that I began to wonder what India was truly like.
She’d told me of the high poverty rate in India and the many kids living in the slums that she wanted to save. Courtney had also told me about the kids she had brought into the home and how their lives had drastically transformed after only a short time of living there. Every story, tugged on my heart strings a bit more than the last and I became even more curious on what is was like over there.
I had been planning to make a trip to India for awhile and this past January turned out to be the perfect time. Being on the Board of Directors, I knew a lot about the orphanage before arriving in India but actually being there was totally surreal. I had the opportunity to stay at the orphanage with one other board member for one week.
We stayed in one of the rooms at the orphanage along with 2 boys from the home, Dipu and Ravi and their caretaker, Sima, oh and Happy, the family dog. Every morning we were woken up by the sound of Happy playfully running around and Dipu entertaining her, bouncing his favorite tennis ball that we later found out he always kept handy in his pocket, while stating one of his favorite American phrases, “Good boy Happy.” Happy happens to be a girl which made this statement even cuter! We could also hear the joyful sounds from Ravi, who has been unable to talk since birth but his joy shines through his bright smile and laugh.
Dipu and Ravi only understood a few words in English but love truly has no word barriers. We were able to play games with the boys, go to the park and enjoy meals together. It was an amazing experience. We also went to the store to purchase clothes for the boys and Sima, toys, and learning activities. When we presented Dipu and Ravi with their gifts, they were ecstatic. Their smiles lit up the room and they were so thankful.
Before we had given the boys their new clothing, we gave Sima her clothing and she humbly asked us if we had gotten clothing for the boys also. This really touched my heart. I felt so content knowing that Dipu and Ravi have such a caring woman watching over them. She told us that she prays for the children every day and that we would soon have a house full of boys! The home is filled with such love and that is just what these kids need.
I am so grateful I was able to experience firsthand how the children at the home are living and I feel blessed to call Courtney, the Director of One Life to Love, one of my best friends. She is an inspiration for people to follow their God given dreams and change this world. I pray that God fills One Life to Love with children that are looking to be loved and appreciated because I know that they will surely find what they are looking for.