The George family has been actively involved with Esperanza since its inception. In fact it was three years prior, when we brought our first two patients to Boston for medical treatment. Our families are very close and there is nobody I trust more with “our” Honduran children. Their entire family engaged with and were entertained by, 17 month old Stefany.
In 2006 Melissa accompanied me on her first trip to Honduras. She was concerned I would have a difficult time emotionally leaving 4 year old Noel. I remember one of her first days when she said, “you have talked about Honduras so often and shown me tons of pictures, but it wasn’t until I actually came in person, did I really understand.” And on the last day when we were saying goodbye to Noel and his family, it was Melissa who was in tears.
Our next patient to arrive was 14 month old Astrid. She (along with Noel) returned every year for evaluations and surgeries. The children simply became a part of the George family. They often slept at their house, went camping and to amusement parks together, visited “Grandma Kay” in Ohio, taught manners, encouraged them educationally, helped them envision and aspire to their life goals, took them to dentist and doctor appointments, moved Astrid in/out of boarding school and the list goes on.
Their children, Michael, Kyle and Katherine have all been to Honduras and shared their experiences with friends, became involved with the water project and built a house for someone in need. They have held fundraisers, book and clothing drives, designed Esperanza brochures, become donors and created a video presentation.
Esperanza’s main fundraiser was established by Melissa. She developed the team EspeRUNza which has become one of the non profits supported by The Genesis Battlegreen Run. Every year she spearheads our team in recruiting runners and sponsors. The Georges are a family of runners who place at the top of the their divisions and have received many awards on behalf of EspeRUNza..
Over the years the Georges have been involved with every aspect of Esperanza. Paul has requested and received donations from his employer, Acadian Assets. We appreciate all their financial support but more importantly, we are thankful for all their direct involvement, especially with “their” Honduran children.