Shayna Kramer

My name is Shayna Kramer, I am currently one of the part-time volunteers here at Save a Child’s Heart. I am from Bowie, Maryland in the USA. I am a graduate from Frostburg State University where I studied Communication Studies with a minor in Health Promotion. Before coming to Israel I was a Teacher’s Aide at The Children Center Daycare in Bowie, MD. In addition to volunteering at SACH I am a participant in the Onward ALT Jinternship program while I am in Israel.

I feel very lucky that I have been able to get to know the children very well. Each of them has made an impact on my life. I feel like I have gotten more from them then they have gotten from me. They have taught me patience, kindness, endurance, and perseverance. They also taught me how to make the best out of any situation. Every single child is extremely strong and brave. I can’t image what it would be like to come to strange country, some of them on their own, to under go major surgery. But despite all of this every morning I am greeted with smiles and waves and maybe even a hug. These children are my heroes!

I was lucky enough to send six weeks being a part-time volunteer at the Save a Child’s House. I was able to get to know the children really well and I was able to form special connections with each one of them. Two of the children that I connected with were Malagrin and Muhammed.

The first child I meet when I entered the SACH House was Malagrin. Malagrin is a beautiful one year from Ethiopia, who is accompanied by her mother.  In the few short weeks that I knew her I was able to see Malagrin grow so much. When I first came there she was barely able to hold up her head. But by the time I left she was not only able to hold up her head but she was smiling and turning from her back on to her stomach. It was incredible to watch how much she had grown.

This sweet little girl is full of pure joy, happiness and love. Whenever she smiles at you, you can’t help but smile back. I really enjoyed getting to know her and her mother this summer.

The other child I got to know really well is Muhammed. Muhammed is two and a half years old and is from Gambia. He is accompanied by his aunt. Muhammed is very spunky and energetic. Every day when I came into the house I was greeted by a smiling face. As soon as Muhammed would see me walk in he would run over to me, give me a hug and drag me to get the toy of his choosing to play with. We would play with toy animals, color and read books together.

I knew that the bond that I created with Muhammed was special but I didn’t realize how special until my last day. When I tried to say goodbye to Muhammed he got very upset and told his aunt, in his native language, that he didn’t want me to leave and that he would cry if I did leave. So I had him walk me to the gate and wait with me until I could get a taxi. He got very excited and told everyone that he was going home with me. But then when I did leave I could tell he was very upset. I had a really hard time saying goodbye to him. Later that day I got a message from his aunt telling me that Muhammed did cry when I left and that they were having a hard time calming him down. I told her to reassure him that we will see each other again one day and that he could talk to me whenever he wants.

Even though he is just two year old, Muhammed taught me something about myself. He taught me that I am able to make a lasting impact on someone’s life. I didn’t realize or think that I was capable of this before this point. This is something I will never forget. I am so grateful for this memory.

I am very appreciative for everything that Save a Child’s Heart has been able to accomplished. They were able to save not only these two wonderful lives but the lives ot thousands of other children as well. Now because of SACH, Muhammed and Malagrin are able to live long and fulfilling lives. I am so glad that I was able to be a part of this wonderful organization and I hope that I will come back someday.

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