Two time Dollie Ambassador Pam Douglas traveled to Kenya with “Save a Child’s Heart”, a medical mission organization which provides pediatric heart surgeries for children all over the world. We sent her with 20 dollies, each wrapped in a small crocheted blanket.
Here is her story which she shared with us upon her return home to Los Angeles:
“Well we arrived back home in LA, and are recovering from a wonderful but very long trip! We feel we made good progress at the Tumaini Orphanage with our technology project, and I had so much fun handing out the dollies. I just wish I could have taken more!
One thing different about this particular trip are the stories I heard from and about the recipients… I think because I had a dollie to make the introduction!
This baby was only 2 hours old! It was amazing! I just love the nurses’s smile as she watched the mother and baby light up over the surprise gift.
This young lady was in labor, and ready to deliver at any moment!
Tumaini has a second orphanage called Huruma, where physically and mentally challenged adults are cared for. This is Mary. She kept saying “Thank You” over and over as she smiled sweetly at her dollie.
This is a cook at the Huruma orphanage who brought her baby to work. We finally understood that the baby was afraid of white people so we dashed out the door after handing her the dollie. But when we looked back, we could see she was examining her new friend!
This mom’s name is Teresa, and the baby is Maxwell. They were coming to the hospital because the baby had a cold. I gave Teresa a dollie, and then asked if she wanted an orange soda and she said yes. As we sat and talked, Teresa asked why I was being so kind to her and her baby. I said I just wanted to make Maxwell smile, and let him know I cared. Come to find out Teresa grew up in the Tumaini Orphanage where we were working and had graduated in 2009. We had such a pleasant time together as she shared a little of her life story – all thanks to me having a dollie for Maxwell.
Helen is the youngest little girl at the orphanage – only 6. She will enter school in January. The manager wanted her to have a dollie. Helen was very kind for a while and let the other kids play with her dollie … but then she stomped her feet and took the dollie back!
I do wish I had brought enough dollies for ALL the children!
You may notice the white stick in several kids’s mouths – they love candy! It is a treat they rarely get.
I hope this gives you a little flavor of how much these dollies meant to all who received them. As I gave out my last one at the hospital, mothers were coming up to me and asking for one for their child! Next time I am going to take many more dollies and less clothes. The more happiness and smiles we can spread to such a poor country, the better.
Thanks again for allowing me to be a part of your wonderful outreach program Dollies Making A Difference, as it allowed me to interact with people and share a little love.”