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Many days I am overwhelmed at the poverty that surrounds us. We are neighbors with many, many Roma families who live along the river area. I've been here almost 7 years and it is still hard to see so many physical needs that I just can't do anything about. Yes, there are aid organizations that come through on occasion and hand out some things like: oil, flour, salt, sugar, milk, backpacks in hopes that some will send their kids to school. I've been told that the families receive about $30 assistance from the Albanian government each month. And like today, some friends gave me some clothes and shoes to give to needy families that I know.
That's the sticky point. ALL the families along the river area are needy and some desperately so. I made a choice to share the items with 2 families this time and they were thrilled with their "new" things. One little girl t immediately threw her old, muddy shoes into the garbage and happily put the "new to her" tennis shoes on little muddy feet! BIG SMILES!
Then my problem was this:
- The two families were very happy and thankful. But their "advertised" joy brought a group of about 10 kids back to me also wanting shoes, etc.
- Helping a few then causes hurt feelings to the others. (I later went back over to the kids' neighborhood with a snack and we had a chat about the shoe situation.)
- There are too many little feet near me to even try to put new shoes on.
So this is my dilemma so I had to share it.Today, when we ask ourselves,
"Which pair of shoes am I going to wear today?"
Thank God that you have options. We are so blessed and sometimes we forget.