LIFE-SAVING MEALS: Salesian Feeding Center in Dilla, Ethiopia

Publication Date: 
July 19, 2011

Our Feeding Center in Dilla, Ethiopia, provides more than just meals to hungry children and their families … it saves precious lives. Just ask Jayne Feeney.

Jayne is one of our Salesian Lay Missioners. She left the comforts of her life in America to immerse herself amongst the poorest of the poor, a region where famine, disease and death are commonplace. Her personal first-hand stories are a great testament of the impact one person can make -- along with the support of kind and generous donors.

A little four-year-old girl by the name of Tegenet is just one example. She had contracted malaria eight times and was on the verge of death. Her mother and baby sister were too ill to do anything, and her brother ran to the Feeding Center for help.

Jayne quickly found a driver so they could pick up Tegenet and rush her to the hospital. But in order to reach the dying girl’s remote hut, they had to crawl across raging waters and navigate around narrow cliffs.

Miraculously, they made it to the hospital in time to save the young girl. Four days later, she was well enough to return home.

Just a few dollars of medicine saved Tegenet's life.

Nine-year-old Mascaram is another touching story. She caught Jayne's attention at the Feeding Center while playing in the dirt. She got around by crawling, and it was discovered that Mascaram couldn't walk because her back had been broken in a brutal attack by a group of men. Without proper medical treatment, her muscles started to atrophy and she was unable to even stand.

With a tremendous amount of encouragement and loving patience, Jayne inspired Mascaram to try standing, even though it was very painful. Jayne worked with the young girl for a year, helping her with exercises and physical therapy. Today, Mascaram is walking again and thriving in school.

Jayne's patience and determination saved Mascaram's life.

When suffering children and families come to the Feeding Center, they often need much more than a meal for the day. They need critical attention and care that can make the difference between life and death.

When caring people like you support our work in Ethiopia and throughout the world, you are making our life-saving work possible. In fact, YOU are saving lives! Please help us continue to do so every day by considering a gift today. Thank you for your outstanding kindness and generosity!

Click here to read about four-year-old Deguna, another inspiring story from our Salesian Feeding Center in Dilla, Ethiopia. One year ago, he weighed a mere 18 pounds.