Volunteer: US Volunteers Return to Birth Province to Care for ICC Children
Aaron and Sonia were adopted from Hunan Province in China, and they became siblings in their adoptive family in the U.S. This summer, they decided to share the many blessings and love they have received by volunteering with ICC. The whole experience was particularly meaningful to Aaron as he was cared for by ICC when he was a baby.
There is nothing better than being able to spark laughter in a child, or to bring a smile to his or her face. This is a truth we discovered while serving at ICC’s Hengyang Care Centre on a Short Term Team for two weeks this July. To our delight, while we were there, we experienced the power of love as we worked with the sweet, adorable children under ICC’s care, and allowed them to forever carve out a special place in our hearts.
ICC will always be special to us, not only because of the precious memories we made in Hengyang this summer, but also because and more importantly, working with the children at Hengyang held deep meaning for us, since both of us are Chinese adoptees.
A major highlight of our time in Hengyang was being able to see the huge amount of progress made by some of the children during our two weeks on the team. One such child was Fufu who mostly kept to himself and did not interact very much with others. However, by the end of my group’s time at ICC, Fufu was laughing, smiling, exploring, and giving us hugs, which was wonderful to see. In addition, on our last full day of work, I was able to help Fufu climb two flights of stairs which is something he was not able to do before. I stand amazed by the night-and-day difference in Fufu at the end of my group’s time with him. Finding ways to connect with these children, each in their own special way, brought us great joy.
“The kids seemed so happy,” shared Aaron (right). “They were always waiting to greet us at the door, and they never ceased smiling. It was a privilege to work with them.”
My teammates and I were amazed at the perseverance of the caregivers at the orphanage as they cared for their designated children around the clock without tiring out. It was also surprising to learn that the caregivers did night shifts as well, as the boys we worked with were often active at night.
We are so thankful for this incredible opportunity, and we hope that the experiences we went through and the lessons that we learned will stay with us, and continue to shape us, for the rest of our lives.
Thank you, ICC, for the impact that you are making not only in the lives of the children you serve, but also in the lives of the volunteers whom you allow to share in the work that you do.