In 2003, I participated in a service learning trip to Ethiopia organized by a Washington, DC based nonprofit. At the time, Ethiopia was in the grips of a severe famine. Despite all of my preparation, I was overwhelmed by the magnitude of the suffering I witnessed and at a loss as to what I could do to help once I returned to the U.S.
Over the next two years, scenes from the trip kept replaying through my head. In the summer of 2005, I returned to Ethiopia to volunteer with a local organization that helps HIV/AIDS-affected children and their families. I returned home with renewed inspiration and a mission to find sponsors for 20 children. I never imagining that that first small step would grow into the Hope for Children Fund that we know today.
Thanks to the hard work of our remarkable partners in Ethiopia, our many generous donors, and a dedicated group of volunteers here in the U.S., I have had the privilege of seeing first-hand the positive changes we have helped bring about in the lives of more than 1,000 children.
My work in Ethiopia over the past ten years has been the most fulfilling of my life. The dreams of the children we serve in Ethiopia are no different from the dreams of our own children. But the challenges they face are so much greater. I hope that you will join our family of friends as we work together to make children’s lives better, one child at a time.
Thank you, Carol Rhees