American Shelley Seale went to India to volunteer at The Miracle Foundation orphanage. She shares photos of her experiences, accompanied by excerpts from her book, The Weight of Silence: Invisible Children of India.
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Before and after

1. "For every child fortunate enough to live in a home like The Miracle Foundation...there are a thousand more the orphanage cannot afford to take in."

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Three girls

2. "They ask for nothing from me other than being here. [T]hey are just like other children I've known with homes and families of their own--except for their neediness, their raw hunger for affection, love, belonging."

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Two India boys

3. "[T]here were stories behind each one of these children."

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Green eyes

4. "I began to discover who the kids were--their individual personalities and dreams."

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Papa

5. "'The meaning of life is to love all. The purpose of life is to serve all.' It was a simple prayer, reminding me that life need not be complicated unless we made it so."

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Group

6. "I desperately hope we will not be too late for these children.... We owe it to them and to the world. And ultimately, we owe it to ourselves."