Friday, December 25, 2009

The Sprit of Christmas award goes to my sister Rebecca Mandel

 Rebecca Mandel and the Burundi children Christmas Rebecca and one of the Burundi Children

Last week my sister hosted a party for thirteen Burundi refugee children at her home. For some months Becky has been volunteering to tutor the Burundi refugee children once a week. The kids are living in Nashville, resettled from refugee camps in Rwanda.
Burundi Christmas Party
Becky bought gifts for each of the children, which they took home to open on Christmas morning. Rebecca also bought gifts for each of the children’s siblings and parents. In all Rebecca bought over 60 gifts. The parents got much needed things like scarfs and gloves. The children wrapped the presents to take home to give to their family.

Becky served them a traditional Christmas meal of turkey and ham and all the fixings. After the meal, she had all the ingredients and they made banana splits. The food was new to them but they quickly took to it. They danced and they sang Christmas songs. My sister, Kathleen, read to them The Night Before Christmas.

For opening her heart and home to these children, I give Becky the Sprit of Christmas award.

Burundi Christmas Party

'Twas the Night Before Christmas

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  1. It sounds like a very special Christmas. I do hope that you and all your readers have had a Merry Christmas.

  2. Gosh, that is lovely of your sister to do. The children and families must have seen some awful things and gone through some traumatic experiences. How are they all doing?

  3. VERY Cool! This is what Christmas should be. Hats off to your family!

  4. Thanks Aldon,
    Thanks Shark..
    Emm, Thank you for that nice comment. I don't know a lot about the families other than what my sister tells me. They have been here over a year and they have jobs. They all work at the same place, a meat packing plant, I believe. Most of them live in a low-income apartment complex which I assme is section 8 housing. I have not seen it, but my sister says it looks a lot like the public housing. Some of the families do live in a public housing project which is one of the worst in Nashville with a high crime rate. So, they are starting at the bottom, but considering where they came from it is an improvement. They are unskilled and have limited English skills.