This photo shows the bed of one of the little boys Dawit lived with. He loved the stickers and even the blank from where the stickers had been.
I just wanted to take a little break to say yesterday was probably my best birthday ever.
I didn’t get anything. My wife was especially nice to me and even made a nice dinner before I had to cover a council meeting and Dawit sang Happy birthday in his own special way.
But I didn’t get a single gift.
That was by design. It’s not like my friends and family hate me or something.
The plight of about 125 orphans in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia – many of whom lived with my new son for almost a year – was really weighing on me this year. Charity.water has had several celebrities “give away their birthday” in order to fund new wells so I thought, “Why can’t I do that?” – even though it is obviously on a much smaller scale.
So I did it.
And my friends and family came through big time. I know of $560 in donations and a couple more checks are in the mail. That means we’ll be just over $600 when it’s all counted. You can look at that two ways.
Either one orphan will be taken care of for 8 weeks or 8 orphans for one week.
That doesn’t sound like a lot.
But I still remember the sheer joy a sheet of stickers brought to those children when we visited in January. In fact, the empty sheet where the smiley face stickers had been brought joy to the children who have so little.
I know the funds people donated in honor of Dawit will mean a lot to his friends who are facing long waits to find their families.
Knowing that these donations helped even a little made this my best birthday yet.
Thank you to everyone who helped make it great.