The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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May 19, 2013

Rosaline's eyes

(Continued)

Then I was asked what I want to do for this little girl I've become so attached to. I was so overwhelmed and wanted to do so much. The only thing my emotions let me do was cry my eyes out. I couldn't even think rationally as Rosaline sat there on my lap.

After finding out that she wouldn’t be eating that day because their food delivery wouldn't come until next week, my first answer to the question was, "I'd like to feed her." I also said I wanted to give her the medications that would rid her of the parasites. But will that really make her into the bubbly little girl that I wish she could be? Will that cure everything and make her life perfect from here on out? Probably not.

What about a quality education to suit her special needs? What about a variety of nutritious meals every day instead of what she’s eating now? What about giving the whole community some good and consistent medical care? What about a safe and secure place to sleep each night? Grandpa wishes to build a dormitory to house about 100 boys and girls on his land. With some good shelter, we'd not only be helping Rosaline, but we'd be impacting the lives of numerous kids. I felt so naive thinking that a meal and a dose of medication would be of much help in the long run.

I felt incredibly overwhelmed that I was only a 21-year old girl that can’t just magically solve all the problems of the world. As Rosaline fell asleep on my lap, the tears just persisted to stream down my face. But then the question remained, what can I do to help? Long-term goals would be funding a dormitory for Grandpa’s kids, giving her an awesome education, guaranteeing her quality food each day, and building a clinic nearby (all things we’re working on). But what immediate impact could I make?

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