Studies reveal that children who grow up with neglect and lack of emotional and social interaction, have measurably different brain structures than kids who grow up in loving homes. Mental, emotional and spiritual development of children is stunted when they lack human touch. This is especially true of institutionalized orphans who spend their developmental years in inadequate and grossly understaffed facilities. Such children rarely feel the touch of other caring human beings; and this neglect permanently alters their lives. Orphans will rarely each their full potentials as children of God, unless they are in a loving environment and human touch.
In Africa, at Royal Seed Home (RSH), the environment is much different for children. African mommas carry their babies on their backs as they go about daily life. When mommas are not present to carry the babies, grandmothers and sisters assume that role. When immediate family members are unable to care for the children, they go to orphanages, such as RSH.
RSH is a distinctly Christian orphanage, and it is also distinctly African. The children know they are loved, first by God, and secondly by their family. Family is 200+ brothers, sisters, caregivers and teachers who live, worship and attend school together. Babies and toddlers are wrapped onto the backs of office workers, cooks, grandmothers, older girls, and even on the backs of willing volunteers. They receive constant physical touch – an ancient African practice that builds communities, poor and rich alike. Volunteers who visit Royal Seed Home enjoy the experience of carrying a child. It serves as a reminder that life includes others; it never excludes nor forgets them, especially the children.
Worship In Action often receives requests for funds to pay the salaries of teachers and caregivers at Royal Seed Home. We do so happily because we know that without these people, Royal Seed Home would not continue to exist. We also know the children who live at RSH will have completely different childhoods from other orphans because there are many adults who love, teach, prepare hot meals, wash their clothes, and watch over them. The children of Royal Seed Home need food, water and shelter to survive. We would argue they also need one additional component – human touch.
This month, donations given to Royal Seed Home will be directed to teachers and caregivers who daily touch the children we love from a distance. These women (and a few men) have dedicated their lives to serving others. Our donations empower them to continue the mission God has given them.