Boy, born December 2008
Gabe participates in a program that provides high quality care and education for orphans who are blind or visually impaired. Gabe was only 18 months when he first arrived and he was terrified. He didn’t want to leave his ayi, and would cry whenever she put him on the floor. He didn’t smile a single time his first week. He didn’t speak at all, but would only cry if he wanted something. He enjoyed playing by himself with a few toys, but didn’t care to interact with the other children. He also didn’t want to walk. He has had both eyes removed due to Retinoblastoma, but he is cancer free now! He has two prosthetic eyes.After a short time, Gabe began to get used to his new environment. He started smiling all the time and began to enjoy exploring his new home. At first he walked incorrectly, but with the patient help of his ayis, he can now walk and run normally. He quickly learned that adults liked it when he showed affection, so he started hugging everyone all the time. Gabe has learned to talk, get his own water, eat by himself, and other self help skills. He is a fast learner and did so well in his last class that he moved up to be with the older kids. He has lots of energy and is learning how to sit still without fidgeting during his lessons. He has been using a cane to walk with and he walks very confidently – he has excellent skills in orientation and mobility. It has been amazing to see Gabe learn and grow. He is an amazing boy!