Wednesday the 26th

We started at HOPE’s feeding program, HOPE feeds

In the afternoon, one of the most compelling and horrifying then uplifting clinics we were privileged to visit was the Fistula Hospital in Addis. Drs. Reginald and Catherine Hamlin were pioneers in performing this specialized surgery in 1959; the need became so great that in 1974, they established the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital specifically for women and girls with childbirth injuries. Dr. Reginald Hamlin has passed away; Dr. Catherine Hamlin still lives at the hospital and says she will live there forever. Annette Bennett, a midwife from New Zealand, and her husband (in charge of the business aspect of running the hospital). After the generous amount of time Annette spent with us, many of us felt as if we had met a saint. Another thing that struck us as a group is that 90% of the women in Ethiopia have femle genital mutilation.

Another unexpected meeting occurred at the end of our time in the hospital. We were introduced to a former Mary Kay Beauty Consultant whom I wrote about earlier. Rebekah Kiser (bkiser@aol.com) who started “The Trampled Rose”. Bekky moved here for a good period of each year and has rented a small house in order to care for women waiting to receive their fistula operations. I heard an amazing story from a young woman named Tadelech who was abducted at 15, impregnated – suffered a fistula, lost her baby…and has been living with this issue until now – she is 21. Tuesday is her operation – please pray for her! By October of ’07, Bekky would like to have 100 houses, which will house 4 people each…the cost per house is $100 per month.