Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Stealing From The Children

I don't always blog about the news, but a story yesterday struck a nerve with me. For those of you who live in this area, you are probably aware of the miraculous work the Magnolia Speech School does. Magnolia is a K-8 school which specializes in teaching children who have severe language disorders and those who are deaf. It has a budget of 2 million dollars per year and is run strictly off tuition (which many parents cannot pay) and donations. I know this because I am on the board of directors for the Magnolia Speech School. Over the weekend, their air conditioning and heating units were stripped and destroyed by thieves who stole the copper on the units. No one noticed it until they couldn't get the heat on before the children showed up for school yesterday morning. The damage to the units, fence and other parts of the building are estimated to cost $100,000. There is hope that insurance will cover a portion, if not all, of the repairs. However, if you've had any dealings with insurance companies lately, you don't always get what you pay premiums for.

Magnolia is special to me because my grandmother is deaf and has been since she was 11 years old. She had a horrific case of the flu and the fever she incurred burned the nerves in her ears. She has never heard a word since. The deaf and those with language disorders are a group of people who get left out of our society. It is a quiet existence for them.

Parents from all over the country bring their children to Magnolia Speech School. It is a one-of-a-kind school, which does not teach sign language. The goal is to mainstream these students into public and private schools at a certain age and to become productive citizens who function at the same rate as any other person born on this earth. As a board member, I've seen it happen over and over again and I stand amazed at what those teachers can do.

Stealing is an abomination to God; stealing from a ministry who serves children is even worse in my opinion. Pray for the person(s) who did this; pray for school as it tries to move forward and that it would find favor with the insurance company; pray for people to step forward to help remedy the damage; and pray for the children who don't understand why they are so cold.

If you are interested in watching a video of the story WLBT ran Monday night, click here:

http://www.wlbt.com/global/story.asp?s=7507956

1 comment:

Zen_Momma said...

My 17-month-old daughter, Sophie, attends Magnolia and I cannot believe that someone could be so cruel to steal from deaf and language-impaired children. Thank you so much for bringing more attention to this story.