"It was a welcome party we will never forget," says Sandra, an SOS mother from SOS Children's Village Bogotá, joyfully upon the arrival of five more kids to her SOS family. The children, two boys and three girls, talk about what it feels like to start a new life in a new home.
From sorrow to smiles
For Nicolas, Luisa, Diana, Julian and Angie life has not been easy. The five children ended up unprotected about a year ago when their father abandoned them, and their mother passed away as a consequence of a fatal disease. In the meantime, it was the oldest brother who took on the responsibility of caring for his small siblings; but all on his own, he just couldn't manage to keep on.
At the village, however, their lives started changing immediately. They received much-needed protection, security, and, even more important, a lot of love.
After a few weeks at the village
"First, they would look a little shy around, but soon they would cheer up and enjoy the welcome party just like everybody else did," Sandra remarks. "And during touring the house, they really did enjoy their first encounter with their new home. They felt amazed. Each one wanted to know which room and bed was going to be his/hers. Once in the rooms, they touched the beds, lay on them and felt the softness of the mattresses."
"They had prepared a very nice welcome party for us," remembers Julian, one of the older brothers. "It was a party that made us feel more important. A lot of pictures were taken, as if we were movie stars. There was a lot of food...very delicious, and we were given presents ... pajamas and towels."
Luisa, with a look of happiness, adds: "I feel very well in my new family ... I feel like Sandra doesn't scold us. She talks to us and helps us understand. Although I miss my mother a lot, I think our new mother makes us feel accompanied."
And Angie, the eldest of the siblings, analytically says: "In the beginning, I didn't like the idea of staying here, because there was no one I knew. Bit by bit, though, we integrated ourselves into the new family and into life at the village. Now it feels like this place is great, mainly because people listen to you and like you for who you are. Ah! Besides that, the food is great and, although there some things I'm not so keen on, I eat them because I know they are healthy for me."