...to my Sweet Dreams Project blog! Here you will find a ton of information about updated news on AHOPE, upcoming events, and new ways to help out. First, though, an introduction is in order.
My name is Susanna and I am sixteen years old (a junior in high school.) In December 2006, I began a project called The Sweet Dreams Project to help the kids of African HIV Orphans: Project Embrace (AHOPE), an orphanage for HIV positive children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. AHOPE survives solely off of volunteer efforts and donations, and therefore can use all of the support it can possibly receive. My mission with Sweet Dreams is to provide a little more comfort and joy to AHOPE's children.
I initially heard about AHOPE when my family began the process to adopt from Ethiopia. From what I heard from other adoptive families and Melissa Fay Greene's incredible book There Is No Me Without You, much was needed in the way of material items for these children. Thankfully, the organization AHOPE for Children, based out of Washington state, provides a lot of aid to AHOPE Ethiopia in the way of money to fund certain projects like establishing an education system and for the children- but I still realized that toys, clothes, etc. were greatly wanted. I kicked off Sweet Dreams with a pajama drive through my brother's elementary school, and, to my amazement, received a turnout of over 200 pairs. My family brought these pajamas to AHOPE when we travelled to Ethiopia in June 2007 to pick up my sister.
The experience was incredibly eye-opening in so many ways (I'm writing about it for my college application essay!) and although I knew before that I wanted to do more with my project beforehand, actually visiting inspired me to do much more. I have a lot of missions to fulfill this year, including spreading awareness about AHOPE and holding more donation drives, so all support is greatly appreciated!
More importantly, please, please, please spread the word about AHOPE. What we do ourselves may not amount to much, but our efforts pooled together can make a huge difference in the lives of AHOPE's HIV positive children.