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House of Joy | Shashemene, Ethiopia

The 14-hour drive with Six Abandoned Babies (with no seatbelts and no car seats)

We loaded into a small Ethiopian van with seven other people for what would become a 26-hour round-trip ride that would forever change my life. The sweltering Ethiopian heat beat down on the small bread-shaped van, with no air conditioning to relieve us from the traveling oven we were riding in. At that time many of the roads were very rugged, with no pavement and very large potholes.

Transporting the babies for House of Joy in Shashemene, Ethiopia
Transporting the babies for House of Joy in Shashemene, Ethiopia

Our destination was a small town in Western Ethiopia called Nekemte, where six abandoned babies waited for our arrival. These precious babies had been approved for adoption and waited to be taken back to the capital city. As we pulled up to the facility, we were struck with how immaculately clean it was. The home was filled with babies who were loved and well cared for. …


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You’ve probably noticed over the past few weeks that we’ve been making some changes to our overall look and feel. We’re excited to announce that we’ve recently partnered with Avenue 153 and Fifty Elevn who have been in the process of rejuvenating and refreshing our brand, messaging, and marketing to bring them up to the level of the work that we do.

It has now been nearly a decade since we last updated our image and so much has changed between now and then. Since 2012, we’ve gone from supporting 20+ projects to now supporting over 40 projects around the world. …


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We arrived into Entebbe, Uganda at 10:30 at night.

It was very warm, and extremely muggy. I knew it was going to be a hot week in Uganda. We stayed the first night in a small modest hotel, and got up early for our 3 hour journey North to Jinja.

In Jinja, we headed to St. Ameria Orphanage and school. There are 40 children who live in the orphanage, and about 310 children in the St. Ameria school. Almost all of the children in the home and school are AIDS orphans, having lost both parents.

The staff and children welcomed us with traditional African greetings and a powerful program of music and Dance. …


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Sam & Irene Kisolo with children from St. Ameria Orphan Care in Mbiko, just outside Jinja, Uganda

Sam and Irene Kisolo are parents to 43 children. Four are their biological children, the others are all adopted. This family causes different reactions. To some, they are the ultimate model for adoption. Others wonder if it’s even possible to effectively parent that number of kids.

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Having spent a lot of time in their home, I’m convinced that this is one of the most healthy families I’ve ever met. The children are well cared for, they are taught in a live-learn environment that prepares them to be outstanding adults. They are destined to become world changers.

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Sam and Irene embarked on this journey when they were on their honeymoon. A stop at an orphanage in those early days set the course of their lives. It was the height of the AIDS epidemic in Uganda. Thousands were dying daily from HIV infections. Sam saw firsthand the devastation of AIDS, but he also saw the needs for AIDS orphans to be raised in a family environment. …

About

Streams Of Mercy

We’re a US-based charity born out of a passion to care for the most needy and helpless of society. Together we’re changing the lives of orphans around the world

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