My name is Autumn Buzzell and I live and work in Ghana, West Africa with City of Refuge Ministries. Here, I run our school, Faith Roots International Academy, and get to be a part in rescuing and the healing of children who have been trafficked into the fishing trade, orphaned, abandoned, and those who just need a little extra loving. What an amazing gift this life is!

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Thursday, November 1, 2012


Sammy is sitting in the middle with the funny grin!

I haven't done a blog on one of our kids for awhile, so I figured it was about time.  Today, I wanted to write about Sammy.

Sammy is an amazing little boy.  I was able to be there when he was rescued in the month of June.  Sweet, smiling, quiet, playful...even a little sneaky sometimes.

Sammy came to us because he was in a pretty bad situation in a village called AdaKope.  We were fighting for his brother, Kesse, but the fisherman refused to release Kesse to us.  Sammy was released though.

FTO volunteer, Michael Lown, made an instant connection with Sammy.  He hung out with him, carried him around, played football with him...instant buddies.

And when we finally brought him home, his face lit up seeing DK and Abigail as they were from the same fishing village.

Sammy was still concerned for his brother and asked about his mother often.  He called his mom back in AdaKope to let her know he was ok and asked when Kesse would be coming.  Little did he know that we had quite a fight ahead of us to bring Kesse back home with us, but he would come eventually.

Sammy has made incredible growth since coming to City of Refuge.  He can shout and fight like all our other boys, but almost everyday, we see new things in him!  His sweet smile, his willingness to help, and now, we are seeing his quick to learn attitude.  He has even surpassed other students in his class as he has started to grasp the English language and can now perform pretty well on exams.

Sammy loves to play football and most afternoons, he will be seen outside playing football with all the other boys.  He's fast moving, and quick to laugh.  He loves to be hugged and tickled and loved on, but sometimes hides behind a facade of shyness.

I'm so proud of Sammy.

When we rescued him, we were looking back through past pictures of him from years before when we had visited AdaKope and almost two years ago, we had taken a picture of Sammy identifying  him as a boy in need of rescuing.  Then, they had told us that he was the chief's son and so we weren't able to take him.  But, discovering the truth (that his mom had been brought into a marraige after her first husband died and now the boys worked for their step-father--a very strong and evil man), we were able to bring him out.

And he's thriving.

From a place with no school.  No clean drinking water.  No church.  No life.  No opportunities for anything other than FISHING...Sammy is free.

And as he continues to walk into who he is meant to be, I am overwhelmed...and overjoyed...that for Sammy...freedom means endless possibilities to become anything he wants to be...freedom means a chance to dream.

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