Four beautiful little girls at the Good Life Centre Orphanange.


Many children call orphanage home

We visited the Good Life Centre Orphanage today. This was a very emotional experience for me. The Good Life Centre is run by a man and a crew of volunteers. There are so many unrecognized saints everywhere. These people work so hard, drawing from the love in their heart, not the money in the pocket.

Sadly, this organization is not certified for adoptions. It takes kids in from the streets and always accepts babies left at the gates during the night. In fact, this is such a common occurence that they now leave a cradle outside everynight. The babies are always immediately taken to the hospital for HIV testing.

All are welcomed here, regardless of mental capabilities. Those who are able go to school are educated without question. When they are old enough, most of the children go on to college or learn a trade. Those who are not mentally capable are freely cared for without question.

The orphanage is collecting donations to build a new facility. The old one collapsed during a storm. Right now there is not even a proper kitchen. They are living in chaos, with the walls literally crumbling around them, but they never stop caring.

We got to play with the kids for two hours or so. They all had a light in their eyes. They were fascinated with our cameras, constantly wanting their pictures taken. Some of the more curious kids even tried to take pictures of their own.

The majority of the kids at the orphanage were girls because of families' desire for boys. If they must have a child and cannot afford more than one, the harsh reality is that the girl will have to go.

All these kids want is attention. I held everyone who wanted to be held, danced with those who wanted to dance, and handed out colorful braclets and candy to all. When we left, they cried, blew kisses, and waved. We all did the same.

Barbara Koehl

University of St. Thomas

St. Paul, MN 55105

Links checked Dec. 12, 2009

Copyright © 2009 Barbara Koehl