My name is MacKenzie. I am a freshman at Issaquah High School. My family adopted my youngest brother Ermias in 2013 when he was six and I was ten. I had the chance to go visit him when he was still living in Ethiopia. He had lived in the orphanage for two years. I played with him and his friends when I was there. Even though we didn’t understand each other we still had lots of fun together. They held my hand as they showed me around. We played soccer. They were very curious, especially with the things I take for granted. My mom’s phone was something they had never seen before and they loved to take pictures and videos of themselves and they re-watched them with such joy and excitement. I had never really thought that much about telephones or technology since I had grown up around it.
also noticed the kids only had a few books, and no chapter books. This made me sad because I love to read. I always have – my mom tells me that around age of two I already had my favorite book memorized. Reading is one of my favorite hobbies. TO me, reading unlocks creativity and opens up the world.
I am glad Open Hearts Big Dreams is dedicated to building literacy access for these and other kids. I’m looking forward to being a member of the junior board and helping make a difference.
Thank you for reading my story!
Junior Board member, Open Hearts Big Dreams Fund