We had a chance to sit down with 17 young people who had lived at our home as children to ask them, why they came, what they learned, what their life is like now, and what this place meant to them . . . their answers were amazing.
Anjamma and Swapna
Anjamma and Swapna were brought to the orphanage in 1999 as young sisters that had just lost their mother and a father that was struggling to provide for the family.
Within days of arriving, both girls became great friends with the other children, and were excellent students in the school. As they grew older, both sisters took leadership roles at the orphanage, welcoming the newer children, helping them to make friends and assimilate.
Now, they are both married, attend their local church, and both have children of their own. They are grateful for the place that the children's home had in their life, and have fond memories of the staff, the other children, and the visits from the American teams.
Pavani and Lavinia
With their older sister Tulasi, Pavani and Lavinia were brought to the children's home by a family member who was taking care of the three sisters after their parents passed away.
Despite their young age, the sisters quickly grew to love the children's home, the Mekala family, and the other children who were like older brothers and sisters to them.
Today, they have all three finished their studies, and are pursuing professional careers. Pavani shared with us that she doesn't know that they would be anything but day laborers if they had stayed in the care of their relatives.
During his time at the children's home from ages 4-16, Samuel became known for his quick wit, easy smile, and kindness. He was dropped off at the orphanage when his widowed mother became too poor to care for him. Samuel was an excellent student who was able to graduate at the top of his class, and set a great example for other students with his hard work.
Samuel has graduated from college, and now owns his own mobile device company. He is married with two children, and shared with us that he has no doubts that he wouldn't be where he is today without the love and support he received from the children's home.