As we explored in last week’s blog entry, no matter what children have experienced before they join the HTN family, we make sure they have what they need to thrive physically, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. Depending on the individual and his or her particular history and personality, the journey to health in these realms is relatively short. For others, this can be an ongoing process.
It’s easy to spot a child who has been at Heroes from a young age; they are very confident, whereas some of the kids who come in at a later age tend to have more to issues to work through. If they come to Heroes as older children or teens, they’ve had more time to potentially suppress emotions and negative experiences, and often believe things about themselves and God that isn’t true.
For example, one of our recent graduates was in another orphanage and public schools up until he entered Grade 9. He’s a wonderful young man and loved by everyone, but he still struggles with lack of confidence more than those who have grown up at Heroes of the Nation.
Whatever their age, at Heroes, we’re always observing our kids. When we see a need of any kind, we address it. Often times, counselors will work with a group of kids, leading them into an encounter with the Lord in which each receives from and interacts with Him in their own way and for their own personal reason.
High schoolers tend to rely heavily on Jemimah, our counselor, for help. Jemimah grew up at Heroes, went off to college to get her degree in counseling, and returned to bless our program.
And of course, we pour on the love. Teachers, while still maintaining the proper level of respect, love, encourage, empower, and connect with each child, especially the little ones. The housemothers dispense love and hugs abundantly.
Another very important ingredient in the healing journey is that the kids have each other. They are always holding hands, hanging on one another, sitting together in a group, etc. Tapping into this wonderful dynamic, we pair kids together of the same grade, and also connect them to someone older who has a similar personality, likes, and/or who has walked through similar grief and trauma.
With all these pieces in place, a child living at HTN has a safe and nurturing enironment in which to grow up into the hero they were always meant to be. They become secure in the love of their God, their HTN family, and their friends. They’re excited and hopeful for their future and passionate to help bring about positive change in their communities, their nation, and ultimately, the world.
To learn more about HTN, who we are, what we do, and meet our wonderful staff and kids, check out our website. Want to visit our kids in Kenya? Contact us here to start that conversation. Blessings until next week!