This is part of a story by Sean at ROP Stories. If you can’t fly to Rwanda, please lend a hand by donating to the ROP Center for Street Children and help with food, water, schooling, job training, clothes and health care.
Most of us take airplanes for granted. For some, like me, they are fascinating. For others they are simply another form of transportation. But for all of us they are commonplace. Airports and airplanes, ho-hum.
To our boys though, they are quite interesting. The ROP Center sits just outside of the airport, so they are quite used to seeing airliners sporadically roaring overhead. But they seem quite interested every time, especially when it’s Ethiopian Airlines’ big 767 or the UN’s massive, deafening cargo plane that makes the ground tremble as it departs Kigali. They also see numerous helicopters buzzing around throughout the day. This is undoubtedly why, when Jenny gives the boys paper and pencils for drawing, there are always at least a few who draw their own versions of aircraft and helos.
Even before we left Rwanda for our visit to America, the younger boys had been asking Jenny if she could arrange a visit at the airport for them. Upon our return she submitted a letter to the Rwanda Civil Aviation Authority requesting we be allowed a tour. After a short wait they called her to inform her that they accepted and gave her a date. On Tuesday we decided to inform the boys while they were all having lunch in the dining hall. Jenny told them, “Since you all have been so good lately, we have arranged a very special trip for you.” Celestin, the director, asked is anyone wanted to guess where. Several of the boys began shouting “America! America!”. Jenny and I immediately felt that the real surprise would now probably be disappointing, but we told them and they seemed quite happy, especially the younger boys.