“I can’t believe it,” 9-year-old Anita rejoiced after opening her very own Box of Joy. “I feel very happy! Nobody has ever given me so many things!” The Nicaraguan girl lives in extreme poverty and suffers from chronic respiratory problems that have stunted her growth. She often goes barefoot, because her one pair of shoes is only for school and the cost to replace them is too high. For a child with so few material possessions, a Box of Joy is a very special gift! Her mother, Hellin, who is raising Anita on her own, said she did not expect so much love and kindness!
Box of Joy brought a smile to the face of 11-year-old Brenda. This Guatemalan girl is one of five children in a family so poor that she has to work to help her parents make ends meet. Her father is a farmer and her mother sells tortillas, and their earnings are barely enough to get by. While helping her parents, Brenda also goes to school. She dreams of graduating from high school and getting a good job so she can buy a decent house for her parents and little brothers. Just being able to get out of their wood-and-tarp shack and buy some nice clothes and shoes would be like a miracle to her, yet she feels grateful for the little she does have — good health and food to eat.
Alison, 7, is wheelchair-bound. She’s also an orphan. Her mother died two years ago, and she never knew her father. She and her three siblings now live with their grandparents in Guatemala, but the family is very poor. Thankfully, Alison and her sister Sofia are being supported by a local children’s center that has a special-needs program. The center wrote to us, “The girls who are in our programs have enjoyed their beautiful gifts very much because it is very rare for them to have in their hands a new and beautiful gift like the ones they’ve received. They, like all the other children, thank you for making them happy.”
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