Open Hearts and Open Doors by Tori Roberts

I had the opportunity to stay with Bina Buumbo, an auntie that works at the Haven, this weekend in her own village and home. We walked to her house with her when she got off work, and as soon as she got home, she began preparing supper. I learned real fast that I know how to do nothing. I began to cut the vegetables, but she soon took the knife and cut everything making it look so simple. As we prepared dinner over the fire outside (where we cooked everything), kids began to walk up. They caught word that the makua (white people) were in the village. My heart melted as they grabbed my hand, wrapped their arms around mine, and sat in my lap. I fell in love with these children in approximately 5 minutes, and I got emotional about leaving Africa about 3 times in one hour.

After we ate, we played games and sang with all the children. It was amazing to me that Bina Buumbo took care of kids at the Haven all day, and then she came home to entertain the children in the village the rest of the evening before going to bed. We sang around the campfire with the children before it got too cold. The stars were unbelievable to look at while singing songs of praise to the Creator. Bina Buumbo told us she was cold and it was time to go inside. Before we went to in, we asked if we could go to the bathroom. We didn’t realize that it was a little bit of a walk. Every time they have to go to the bathroom, they have to walk to the communal bathroom, consisting of a whole in the ground with four walls around the toilet area in the middle of the bush. When we went inside all the children joined us in her home to finish singing, do a Bible study, and pray before going to bed at 7:30 pm.

First thing Saturday morning, we got up and went to fetch water in the communal well. It is Winter here and cold in the mornings here so you can imagine how it feels for the water to splash on you as you carry the water buckets on your head back home. After we cooked breakfast, it was time to begin preparing for lunch. She told us four girls that stayed that it was time to go get a chicken. We walked about 10 minutes to where the chickens were. We stood there confused about what to do until she filled us in on what to do: “run.” We helped chase down a chicken that was for lunch and carried it back home, we killed and cleaned it up to cook. We prepared and ate lunch. We played with the children in the village all throughout the day. They taught us all of their games and songs. We played basketball without a goal and volleyball without a net, and if you know me very well, you know I enjoyed that! They shared some of their every day treats from the trees surrounding such as umbra and “Zambian bubblegum.” Bina Buumbo taught me how to make a Zambian fire and how to sweep like she does around her home to keep the place nice and clean. Nshima is the meal that the Zambians eat every day, most if not every meal. We had the opportunity to help her make the nshima. It takes lots of arm muscle…that I do not have. It was incredible to watch how fast she prepared every meal. After dinner it was time to wash our plates with the water we fetched before dinner. We watched the sunset before going inside to sing with the children and get ready for bed. As I watched the sun go down, I fell in love with another part of Zambia: sunsets. We woke up Sunday morning at 6:15 am to begin walking back to the Haven to end our time in the Village. While spending the weekend with Bina Buumbo, I gained so much knowledge about and respect for her and the ladies in this culture.

We got ready back home before heading out to Kasibi Village Church of Christ. We had Bible study, a sermon, communion, and then we sang for the church. Their faces lit up as we sang a song in Tonga (their language). Church started at 10 am and went until 1 pm. It was great for everyone to be so focused on the Spirit that they were not worried about what time we would let out. After church, we walked out and shook every person’s hand before going to Ba Leonard’s house (a man that is active at the Namwianga mission where I stay). They fed us lunch, and the Chief’s drummers came to play for us. Everyone danced as they played the drums…EVERYONE. There is no shame or pride here in Africa, and it has completely shattered my comfort zone. I think that is why this place is so special…you just have fun. Laugh with each other; not at each other.

Mealy meal is what they use to make nshima, and we had the opportunity to hand out bags of mealy meal to the individuals in the village to feed them for a month. Their gratitude was so heart warming.

It is obvious we are different, but there has not been one time that we have been treated different. Everyone is so welcoming here. Oh how different life would be if we would set aside our pride and welcome everyone like the Zambians do here.

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My McNair Experience by Felicia VanWinkle

This summer I was able to participate in the McNair summer research internship. The McNair Scholars Program was set up to help students who are minorities, low income, or first gen. college students get into graduate and doctoral programs! As part of this program, scholars get to conduct research over a topic of their choosing under the guidance of the McNair staff and a faculty mentor.

My research is titled, “Hungry, Hungry Hippotherapy: The Caregiver Perspective on Choosing the Hippotherapy Approach.” I was placed at the hippotherapy barn for one of my undergrad clinical placements, and I fell in love.  I enjoyed everything about it and wanted to know more, so I immediately knew that’s what I could do my research over. I asked Mrs. Fisher if she would be my mentor because she was my C.E. for when I was placed at the barn. Thankfully, she said yes! She was so supportive and kept me calm when I thought all my research was going to fall apart!

I spent 2 months interviewing, transcribing the interviews, and analyzing all of my data. It was NOT an easy thing to do, but by some miracle, I was able to get it done. I also got the chance to present my research in Atlanta, GA, Buffalo, NY and a final presentation at Harding.

I was so lucky to get to participate in this internship! I learned so much about my topic, the research process, and how to present my findings. I believe that this research internship has really prepared me to take on my first semester of grad school at Harding!

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Mango Tree by Haley Roberts

I am starting to realize that my time here in Africa and at the Haven is starting to dwindle down. Knowing that in a few short weeks I will be leaving those sweet babies breaks my heart. I am going to miss the welcoming atmosphere, the kindness of the people, Ba Harold’s cooking, the soccer games, and just the simple-ness of life here. Oh how I am going to miss the babies, all the love that is spread at the Haven, singing Mango Tree and dancing with the Aunties. And most of all I am just going to miss seeing God everywhere I look, whether it be in the beautiful scenery he has provided for us, the people, or just the small slap in the faces he provides for us and the humbling feeling I have been able to experience while on this trip. The love these people have for others and God is amazing. Romans 12:9-13 states, “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.” These past few weeks here I have seen the true meaning of building relationships with people and showing hospitality to others. Let your love be genuine! We are called to be love, love one another, and love our enemies. We need to show and share Christ’s love with those around us!

It is winter here and to say it is cold at night is an understatement. I am currently sleeping in leggings, pj pants, sweat pants, a short sleeve shirt, long sleeve shirt, and two sweat shirts to try and keep warm. I am definitely a wimp!  The morning and nights are very cold but then it gets very warm during the day. I am currently experiencing a sore throat and of all the things I didn’t pack, it would be cold medicine.

The walk to the Haven this morning was warm, breezy, and very peaceful. I love getting to walk to take in God’s natural beauty and to interact with all of the people along the way. Both of my clients did really well today. My morning client is starting to get to use her AAC device during our group sessions and language class, she is learning to sequence two hits to communicate what she wants on her own, and the past two days she has completed her lunch in thirty minutes without throwing up. She is also starting to drink water out of a sippy cup! I know I say it every time I talk about her…. but how amazing is that? To be twelve and never get anything to drink and now she is able to drink water out of a sippy cup? That will bring tears to your eyes. Getting to see the progress she has made in this short amount of time reminds me over and over again why I love the field of speech language pathology. My afternoon client is slowly starting to come out of her shell. Today she did not cry one time during the session. Whoop Whoop! She is talking more and more and today she said mamama, pa pa, dada, wa, and waved good-bye. My how I am going to miss that sweet voice when I come back to America.

For lunch, today we had the traditional Zambian meal of Nshima, chicken, rice, rolls, and cake. I want to say that the Nshima is starting to grow on me, but I really do not think it is. I have to make myself eat it every time though because when we stay with the Aunites that is what I will be eating.

Tomorrow is our last full Friday at the Haven (which makes me very sad) because June 14-18 we will be traveling to Livingstone, the 21-23 we will be staying with the Aunties, and then the 24thwe head back to Livingstone before traveling home. I am going to have to start praying that the days last a little longer so I can spend a little more time loving this place and these people.

John 13:34: “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”

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Spiritual Path by Haley Roberts

This morning when I woke up we had no power. I am starting to learn that this is a normal thing here in Africa. Electricity is something that I take for granted at home. So often I complain when the lights go out and it is almost an everyday thing here in Zambia. We take so many things for granted such as the lights in our home, the food in our pantry, the clothes on our body, running water, etc. but here in Africa, those are a few things that are not always available. I hope that this trip is a humbling experience for me and I no longer take those things for granted or say things like I don’t have any clothes to wear or saying there is nothing to eat when the pantry is full. John 16:33 states, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation. But take heart, I have overcome the world.” A devotional I read this morning reminded me that it is not my job to fix all of the brokenness of the world. Even though I want to try and fix it, it is not my duty. I came to Africa wanting to make a huge difference and fix things such as those listed above. In reality I knew that I would never be able to change things but that doesn’t mean I didn’t want to come here trying to do just that. Reading verse 33 and see how the people here live their lives with joy made me remember that it is not my job to do that. It is Jesus’s job! My job was not to come to Africa to change anything, it was to love, support, and help them with what they have now. All while letting them bless me and allow me to grow into a stronger Christian. We should not be overwhelmed by the brokenness of the world!

My time at the Haven is beginning to wind down so I am trying to make the most of every moment. My morning client was out for physio today so I spent my time on the veranda of Haven 1 with my favorite little boy that I talk about in most of my blogs. I have fallen in love with this sweet baby and would bring him home with me if I could. For him, I did language stimulation and worked on his babbling and joint attention. He engaged in conversational babbling, laughing, initiating request for toys, and maintaining eye contact. My afternoon client acted sleepy during group and would not do anything but lay on me…but honestly, I was perfectly okay with it. I love getting sweet loving’s from these babies. During individual, she was a little fussy but eventually played with me and others, would run up to me smiling wanting me to pick her up, and was engaging in conversational babbling.

When we got back to our humble abodes a local artist was there selling oil paintings on canvas (it takes him four days to complete a big one) and paintings made from dried banana leaves. Of course, I spent more money (LOL). After supper, we listened to Dr. Meeker, Mrs. Gina, and Tessa on the Namwianga Radio Station discussing the topic of strokes. We ended the night watching The Hannah Montana Movie and The Lizzie McGuire Movie. Tomorrow we will be going back to the market in Kalomo.

I have not bragged on Ba Harold in a while….and today is a perfect day to brag. Today we had fried chicken, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, and salad. It was amazing! It was almost like I was back at home sitting in my grandparent’s kitchen.

Psalm 121:8:“The Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.”

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Our Final Sunday at Namwianga Church of Christ by Haley Roberts

This morning we spent our final Sunday at the Namwianga Church of Christ because the next few we will be visiting Kasibi and Livingstone before coming home. It was sort of a bitter sweet moment and I know that I will definitely miss the church and its people. We did not get to help with Sunday school today because the children were visiting Livingstone Church of Christ. While sitting in church and listening to the preacher I had a peace come over me and a realization of how much we make church a materialistic thing in America compared to here. {Sitting there I received chills as I listened to people sing out to praise and worship God. I realized that they do not care what their church building looks like, what others are wearing, or even what you look like. All they care about is praising and worshiping God. Their praise comes from their heart and they genuinely want to share their love for Christ with others. I do not understand why most (not all) churches in America feel more materialistic than a raw, faithful church. At home, we think we have to look our best, wear our nicest clothes, get their early in order to get the seats in the back so that we can slip out as soon as it is over, etc. In reality God does not care about any of these things. All He cares about is if we are intentional in our relationships with others and have a true faithful relationship with Him. We should just go to church to worship God and spend time with our Christian brothers and sisters. Be true and raw in your faith!}

After church, we were able to go and have high tea and desserts on a tobacco farm. This was a really neat experience and I am thankful that Mrs. Mandy and Mr. Roland welcomed us. They allowed us to explore their gardens, lake, and home after we ate our desserts and drank our tea. They then showed us around their farm and told their story of growing up in Zimbabwe before being forced to leave their farm and move. They chose to move to Zambia in 2003 where they started over and our currently still re-growing their farm. They have about 200 Zambian workers and they have created a village for the workers and their families to live in. They currently have about 800 live in their village.  It was a very relaxing way to spend our afternoon. After the visit with Mandy and Roland we headed back to the mission for supper, a meeting with Jana, journaling, and then bed!

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Open Market in Choma by Kara Heber

As a follow-up to my last post, I wanted to share a little about the market in Choma. We rode the bus about an hour into town where Mr. Chance pretty much let us off the bus and pointed in a general direction where the open market was. “Meet over there at the lawn of the museum”, he said. We filed off of the bus just to look at each other and wonder where to go. The paved street was lined with stores and filled with families shopping. I heard one little girl say to her mom, “look at all of the white people”.  Our huge group excused our way through the crowds of people and ended up splitting into smaller groups after a quick stop at the grocery store.

My small group wondered in the direction Mr. Chance suggested to again, look lost. One gentleman came up to us and said, “are you looking for something?”, to which we asked where we would find the open market. He said it was right behind the row of stores behind us, and offered to escort us through the bar instead of walking the whole way around. We all looked at each other, knowing it wasn’t the best idea for a few reasons. Tori stepped up and stated that wouldn’t be necessary and we continued on our way around. “Are you afraid?”, he asked. We weren’t necessarily afraid, but it’s good we followed Tori’s lead.Behind the stores we found dirt roads decorated with the same tarp tents we saw in Kalomo. The road followed railroad tracks for miles. I’m assuming they are no longer in use based on how close the tents were to the tracks. Some tents had music blasting, numerous tents/stands had little speakers that shouted some type of announcement, everyone starred, many asked us to come to their tent, and some tried to walk with us. It was an unusual feeling being watched so closely from every direction. I’d be lying if I said it was not intimidating.

This market had more to offer than the previous. Here we saw everything from barber shops to stands selling car parts, live chickens to piles of minnows on the table in the sun. We even saw a guy drive by with a small goat in the front basket of his bike. I wanted to take so many pictures, but it made me nervous because we already had so much attention. We were friendly, though. I tend to greet people more than normal (I guess), so I would say “muabukabuti” which loosely translates to “good morning” in Tonga. They LOVED to hear us attempt to speak Tonga. Most of them laughed…I’m sure I’m pronouncing it wrong, but they seemed surprised by our efforts, replying “kabuti” (fine) and waved back with great big smiles.

We walked in one direction for a loooong time. Eventually we figured we should probably turn around. Instead of figuring out which little roads we took to get where we were, we found the railroad tracks and followed them to the lawn of the museum.

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At the museum, we had a fresh chicken and fries picnic on a few bed sheets. When I Say fresh, I mean Mr. Chance said, “don’t look out back behind the restaurant”.

We did not go through the museum, but we did stop at the gift shop inside. They had beautiful woven baskets, hand-carved items, African masks, and countless other things. Our group spent hundreds of dollars in the gift shop. I think it was a little overwhelming for the lonely employee who calculated and wrote down each item by hand.

On our way home, the bus was packed with people and a plethora of souvenirs. As people made room on the seat to sit down, the souvenirs were PILED on top of laps and in the aisle way. Just when we were all comfortable with our seating, our bus was stopped by officials along the highway. They insisted that we all get off of the bus. For a few seconds, we were all confused about what was going on. We stood up, left our things behind, and followed the person in front of us to a basin of water with a small stream of water flowing out of it. They stopped our bus to make us “wash our hands” to prevent the spread of hand, foot and mouth disease that we could get from the animals…I don’t know. We are still confused. We got on the bus and whipped out the hand sanitizer as cows crossed the path on our left. Good thing we washed our hands.

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Wanted by Haley Rees

Our first week of clinic at the Haven has come to an end. As I reflect on the past week and the start of another begins, I can’t help but think of the love and warmth I’ve felt at the Haven. I constantly find myself laughing with the aunties, smiling at kids, and sneaking in kisses on babies’ foreheads when I can.

As humans we are made to love and be loved. We all need to be nurtured and comforted. We long to be wanted and to have that feeling fulfilled. As Christians the same principal applies. We are to love one another as Christ loves us. God loves us so much that he longs to be loved by us and wants us to reciprocate the same love that he showers us in daily. He wants the feeling to be mutual. He lavishes us in his love and wants his name to be praised from our lips.

A week ago, when I met my clients, I was so excited. I was assigned a four month old boy and a one year old girl. As the week progressed so did my relationship with my client’s, slowly. By the end of the week I was still not able to have my full hour long session with my little girl without the presence of an auntie. Having one of the aunties sit on the ground on my hand-picked chitenge (fabric) with me helps keep my client calm. It makes her feel more peaceful and she attends to the session more easily.

I’ve always enjoyed kids and been good with handling them. I slowly made progress with my little girl, but at the end of the week when I was still unable to have a full one on one session, I was a little discouraged. Seeing her so upset and crying was not a self-esteem booster and it hurt me to see her uncomfortable. As the week went on, she eventually let me do hand over hand manipulation, sat in my lap, and on Friday fell asleep in my arms.

All I wanted was to be wanted by this little girl. I longed for the feelings to be mutual, for her to reciprocate the same emotions that I was showing. One of the aunties, the very first one that sat with me and my client actually, took up an interest in my client and I’s relationship. She would ask me each day throughout the week how she was doing and how the session went that day. Friday during our group language session she brought my client over to me and plopped her in my lap with a big smile. It was as if she sensed the longing I had to be wanted and loved by this little girl. As she squeezed her tiny body into my lap, I greeted her with a hug and a smile. She sat quietly staring at me with big brown eyes for about 20 minutes before tears started to stream her cheeks. I tried to comfort her as I wiped the tears and snot from her face. This went on for about 20 minutes before I was defeated and passed her back to the auntie.

After the hour long language session I made it a point to circle back around and say goodbye to my client. She was laying on the ground in their playground courtyard and I rubbed her belly and said “Bye, I’ll see you later!” The same auntie looked at me and said, “You love her.” As I felt tears start to form in my eyes, I nodded my head and said “You’re right, I do. I’m just trying to get to know her better and make her feel more comfortable.” She looked right in my eyes and with the sincerest words and smile said, “Just keep trying, she will come around.”

As much as I’ve longed to be wanted by this little girl that I’ve only known for a week, it breaks my heart to think of how the Lord feels. Everyday we turn our backs on him and yet he still runs after us, pursuing us, and yelling after us “Just keep trying, you’ll come around.” It hurts me to think about, but it is also so comforting. Knowing that we have a God that is so relentless and keeps no records of wrongs.

I hope that as a new week begins here in Zambia and even as my life continues, I can remember this moment and this feeling. The feeling of longing to be wanted and praying that I can reciprocate that for others. Most importantly that I can chase after God with the same passion even more fervently.

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Preparations by Kara Heber

Hello everyone! My name is Kara and I just completed my first year of graduate school at Harding University. I study communication sciences and disorders, aka speech pathology. It’s hard to believe, but in one short year I will be a certified speech therapist!

When I first began searching for graduate programs at the end of 2017, I was immediately impressed with Harding’s extensive international and cultural opportunities. I read that the large majority of their undergraduate students study abroad, but I was excited to learn that their graduate programs also provided students with the chance to study in other countries. Before Harding even accepted me into their masters program, I had my fingers crossed, hoping to be offered this opportunity to study in Namwianga, Zambia.

Last semester (Fall 2018), Mr. Chance began asking about who from our cohort would be interested in the summer’s clinical practicum at The Haven. My husband, Brett, knew that I had been planning on going ever since I found out I was accepted to the program at the end of February, so I signed up without any hesitation. (I’d like to give a special shout-out to Brett right now because he has been so encouraging and supportive about me leaving for 6 weeks, knowing this is something that I’ve been looking forward to for well over a year now…thank you, honey!)

When more details about the trip started to unfold, I knew that I was going to have to ask for help in raising the money to go. I created a page on GoFundMe and was amazed with the responses and donations that flooded my account. Without everyone’s help, I can honestly say that I would not be able to afford this practicum. Well, that or I would go and Brett would be living on the streets when I returned. That being said, THANK YOU to everyone who gifted me this opportunity to study abroad. It is appreciated so much more than you know… SO MUCH.

In addition to the fundraiser, my mom and I wanted to donate our hair before I left. We allowed donors to vote on whether my mom would “save it” and only donate the minimum 8 inches or “shave it” meaning buzz it all and donate every ringlet of her curly locks. After 4 months of voting (January – April), “save it” prevailed and she donated 8 inches to Wigs for Kids. I was also able to donate and gave 11 inches to the same organization.

There are 9 of my classmates going with me to Zambia! We’ve had scheduled meetings to review vaccination requirements, rooming situations, cultural differences, and many other important details that helped us to prepare for this trip. We recently received our individual kits full of tools to help with feedings, sensory integration, oral motor strengthening, oral stretching exercises, and ways to help the babies develop a number of feeding skills. This past semester, we had a pediatric feeding class where we learned about how to treat preemies and the rest of the pediatric population using these various techniques. I can’t believe I will be able to practice on real babies in a few days!!

Packing is in progress. I should have plenty of room to bring everything I need. We are allowed a carry on, a personal bag, and two checked bags under 50 lbs. One checked bag will be packed with donations for The Haven (diapers, scrub tops for the aunties (caregivers), baby clothes, etc.) and the rest is for whatever I want to bring. We are to wear long skirts while we are there so I did pick up a few from Goodwill. The dry season (their “winter”) just began in Zambia so we should have really nice weather while we are there. I was told to expect temperatures around the 70s during the day and then chilly nights when I will want a sweatshirt. I still need to decide what to pack as my “coming home” outfit. Students who previously went to The Haven have suggested we pack an outfit in a Ziploc bag with a dryer sheet. That way, when I come home, I’ll be able to hug Brett without smelling like a zebra.

 

Now that all of our questions have been answered and our legal documentation is up-to-date, we are pretty much ready to go! Thanks to Mr. Chance and Mrs. Vendetti helping us organize all of our papers and travel necessities, all we have left to do is get there!

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Alumnus contributes to research

HU CSD alumnus Clayton Whitfield is pursuing his AuD at UAMS in Little Rock.  Clayton’s research is featured in this article in the recent issue of the Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research.  We are proud of you, Clayton!

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Clinical Practicum Highlight – New York City

From the Big Apple to the Marble City

Hannah Jahandarfard

(Center, front row)

From the moment I walked through the clear glass doors on the 28th floor of the Madison Avenue building, I knew it was a special place. I was greeted by a shimmering silver coffee table that spelled out “SMILE” along with dozens of friendly faces. The opportunity to intern at the global nonprofit organization, Smile Train, in New York City is an experience I will always treasure. If you don’t already know about this unique group, they provide 100% free surgery and care to individuals with cleft lip and palate who would otherwise not be able to afford it. They are also working towards providing comprehensive care to address the needs of patients after surgery such as follow-up care and speech therapy. Through their model, they promote high-quality, independent work while having funded over 1 million life-changing surgeries.

During my time at Smile Train, I got to help with numerous projects with the wonderful ladies on the Programs Team. Among the projects were learning about Smile Train’s patient and grant databases, inputting information from Final Grant Reports involving speech, orthodontics, and nutrition into their record systems, finding new articles about cleft lip and palate for their Patient Care Library on their website, updating public resources such as listings of cleft teams across America and the UK, and finally my favorite project which was helping with the development of a free speech app they are creating specifically for kids with clefts. There was always a plethora of work to do, but it was always so much fun. This was largely in part because of the incredible NYC staff. They welcomed me with open arms into their modest family and instilled in me a sense of confidence I didn’t know I had.

It wasn’t all work though. I got to explore the Big Apple too! I had an awesome time immersing myself in the staples like walking across the Brooklyn Bridge at sunset, eating “The World’s Best Cannoli’s!” in Little Italy, and seeing Phantom of the Opera on Broadway. But there’s more to being a temporary New Yorker than checking off all of the tourist attractions. I learned how to navigate the bustling streets and subway system while only getting lost a handful of times (a big accomplishment for a navigationally-challenged girl like me). I found the best New York pizza slice at Joe’s Pizza in Greenwich Village and ate at Madison Square Park’s Shake Shack more times than I’d like to admit. But most importantly, I opened up my heart to the fascinating citizens of NYC who have a knack for teaching others more about life in a 5-minute conversation than you ever knew possible.

It was an experience I’ll never forget. I learned a lot about the incredible work that goes into making a nonprofit organization not only succeed, but thrive. The employees at Smile Train have such a passion for the work that they do and it was an honor to be a part of their effort, even if only for a short while. And now, a year and a half later, I have been immensely blessed to be able to take these special lessons from Smile Train and utilize them at my new job, which is also a nonprofit organization – a children’s hospital in the Marble City of Tennessee. Daily I strive to use what I’ve learned to grow my passion for my community and job, provide comprehensive and thoughtful care to each individual, and to turn strangers into friends.

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