According to UNICEF, as of 2009, there were a total of 340,000 Liberian orphans; this out of a total child population of some 1,878,000 and a country of just three and a half million people. If you do the math, that’s about one orphan out of every nine people in the country. Even if the number of orphans is on the high side, it underlines the fact that the war left many children without a father or a mother.
One of the joys I had while in Liberia after Christmas was delivering dolls and clothing to one of the many orphanages in the country. At the same time, it was sad, realizing that we couldn’t do more.
Our trip was made possible by the loving hands of the Women’s Missionary Union of our church who made each doll by hand. With love and care they made dolls that reflected the ethnicity of the children that would be caring for their new playmates. Even the boys took the little boy dolls, which was a bit of a surprise to our host. Much like in our culture, boys don’t typically play with dolls, but the little boys were happy to receive a toy.
Not wanting to distribute dolls and leave anyone out by not having enough, we called ahead to the orphanage and spoke with the administrator. We asked her how many orphans she had in her care. Her response was that she had 60 children. When we counted our dolls. We had exactly 60. We worship YAHWEH-JIREH, “The Lord will provide.”