The Beginnings of Hope

I apologize for the lack of updates lately, Ray was in Orlando last week which made it an interesting and hectic time around here. I was a little nervous about how I was going to get Abbie and four sleepy brothers up, dressed, and in the van by 6:45am each morning to get the boys to school. It ended up being quite a blessing! Abbie really enjoyed the early morning activity, and relished taking the boys to school.

She has been doing really well lately. This past weekend Ray and I both noted how much more quickly she was using her eyes. I laid her in bed with him on Saturday, and as soon as he started talking to her she turned her head and eyes right to him — so quickly that it shocked both of us. She also was really looking at books, brothers and other fun things. Her therapists both commented on her eyes this morning before I’d even had a chance to tell them about the weekend.

This biggest news, however, is that after 18 months of working on it, The Hope Project is slated to start the first week in February!! We are fortunate to be doing this in partnership with the University of Hawaii School of Speech and Language. They have space we can use, they are going to provide speech therapists for the kids, and in essence are making our first steps possible. I was thrilled to tell Abbie that she is going to be starting “school” after the holidays, right down the street from her brothers — her flashing eyes and dancing eyebrows told me my excitement isn’t solitary. Initially, it will be 2-3 mornings a week for 3 hours. The intensive, personalized interaction and stimulation will be terrific for her, and I am anxious to see how she will respond to it.

Now that we have our first foot on the ground, with our eyes fixed on a tremendous vision, I want to invite you to join us in this journey. Beginnings are hard for a non-profit organization, because most funding sources, both public and private, want to see some sort of track record before granting support. So, I am praying that you, Abbie’s Angels, will help us make this part of Abbie’s mission a reality. Financial contributions of any size would be so appreciated, and can be sent to:

Hope Project Hawaii
c/o PO Box 235201
Honolulu, HI 96823

Each Christmas lately for the adults in our family we’ve just been supporting worthy causes in their name. Last year we “bought” llamas for families in South America. This year, they are going to be receiving a piece of Hope. As Christmas nears, I pray you would also consider this in your family. I do need to let you know, however, that we do not currently have official 501 (c)(3) status, so if you want to ensure your donation will be tax deductible, please wait until after January 1st.

If you live on O’ahu and are interested in getting involved in a practical way, we could really use volunteers with OT or PT qualifications, or other therapeutic backgrounds.

Initially, funds donated will be used to purchase OT and PT support, basic equipment for OT, PT, Sensory, art, music, and supplies like books. Eventually, we are hoping to hire a uniquely trained special educator who will provide Conductive Education for the first time in Hawaii on an ongoing basis. CE is Hungarian in origin, and is very successful at getting motor-challenged kids out of wheelchairs and up walking. There is much more to our vision, but as Abbie’s pediatrician reminded me last week , “A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”

We look forward to my parents arriving tomorrow, to experience sun, warmth, and power, leaving the currently Stone Age Northwest behind. We are praying for those of you enduring the aftermath of the storm.

As the “shopping days” dwindle, I hope that the light of the Christmas grows in your heart. In reflecting on the first Christmas I realize that there was also a lot of hub-bub preceding that event. After giving birth to five children, I know that labor is not a “silent night”, and I wasn’t even surrounded by livestock. But, after the birth pains, I think stillness descended and wonder abounded. I hope that each of us can experience that part of Christmas too!

2 thoughts on “The Beginnings of Hope

  1. Of Tiffany, I’m so pleased for you and Abby. My DH left Honolulu on Sunday to fly to San Antonio and so far he hasn’t done a day’s work due to cold and ice. So, I’ve been praying your trip would be more productive!!!!!Praises,
    Tammi K

  2. Aloha Tiffany,

    My thoughts and prayers are with you. I’m not sure if you received my voicemail about two weeks after I saw you at the Christmas Tree Trimming last year. I think about your family and continue to be amazed by your strength.

    God bless,

    Juanita (Justicia’s mom)

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