Center of Development

Special needs greenhouse
Genti with his accordion

The Center of Development in Shkoder is home to around fifty mentally and physically handicapped people who have nowhere else to go or any other means of living. It also provides a day care program to another forty patients. This work has been a particular challenge because nearly every patient has vastly different needs as to mental and physical therapy.  Hope for the World has provided autism testing materials, a beautiful green house, a sound system to bring soothing and calming music, physical therapy equipment, musical instruments, lessons, supplies for arts and crafts, and kitchen appliances.  The latest provision has been beautiful outside tables with benches and a modern playground for the clients.  

Mirela Ymeraj ministers to the special needs patients here with her sweet spirit. Mirela was our first Albanian employee, coming to us in 1997. This sort of work takes a special sort of love and patience.  Mirela says, “I am so thankful to God for the love He gave me in my heart, so they can feel it and they all love me and are not afraid of me.  I am privileged that even though they can't talk, they demonstrate through their actions that they love and feel good to have you around them. I am blessed to get to meet some of the parents and encourage them that their children are so precious.”


From group activities to teaching life skills to building spiritual foundations, Mirela and the rest of the Shkoder staff pour from their own souls into this Center for Development that was otherwise a very hopeless place.


Paraplegic and Tetraplegic Center:  

Fredi Zefi – We just started working at the Paraplegic center where we have already installed a wheelchair ramp and a handicapped bathroom.  We provide Christmas and other activities throughout for this special group and their families.  It is a great blessing for them to have a place where they can get outside of their homes and meet with others.  We have invited them to church, and several have come on different occasions.