The boy didn’t smile, but he came closer. His bare feet, earth stained shirt, and ragged trousers betrayed his poverty. Very often, JVMI medical missions teams are greeted with excited smiling children, waving for cameras, and giggling at having their picture taken. Volunteers love being with the children, exchanging smiles, laughter, hugs, and high fives.

Sometimes the kids are hams, posing and making faces for the camera. Sometimes they are shy, coyly smiling behind their shawl. Some kids, however, are leery of a camera, leery of all these strangers, foreigners in their community. It’s as if you can see them thinking, “Who are you? What do you think of me? Can I trust you?” And some are quietly curious.

When a camera was raised to take this little boy’s picture, he DSC_0248showed neither excitement nor apprehension. He simply gazed back at the lens, quiet. He came closer and leaned against the large blue bus, resting his arms over the tire behind him.  The team member photographing him said he seemed very comfortable having his picture taken. After the photos, the boy remained, watching. He never said anything, but he stayed around. “He just hung around us for about 20 minutes and just enjoyed being with us. He continued to stand with us as if to receive the comfort that we had brought to him by Jewish Voice Ministries being in his neighborhood.”

Word is this is very common. Whether they show enthusiasm or caution, children are drawn to our team of volunteers. They want to know more about these unfamiliar people. They’ve heard about the free medical and dental clinic coming to them. Not only is it a huge and exciting event, they know we are there to help them. Here was one little boy who just wanted to be close to the people bringing such a gift.

We have four more medical missions in our 2014 schedule. Visit the Medical Outreaches page of our website to learn more about them. Why not come with us? There’s a vital role waiting for you on any of our JVMI medical missions!

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