Child Spotlight: Meet Naomi

Child Spotlight: Meet Naomi

Today we are excited to introduce you to Naomi! We recently heard from Naomi and her mother, Alicia, when she shared an amazing video of Naomi playing the cello. You will quickly see that Naomi is a talented and determined young lady. Later this year, the Smiths will celebrate 10 years since Naomi became their daughter. We know you’ll be encouraged by her inspiring video and interview.

How did Naomi choose the cello when deciding on an instrument? 

We have always attended local orchestra performances, so she always said she wanted to play.  She considered the violin but she does not have an elbow on the left arm so once the violin was in the position, her hand could not turn to press the strings.  The cello allowed for flexibility in position.  This allowed her to be able to reach the strings on the left hand.  She has three fingers on that hand but only two will function with a fine motor skill to press the string.  Therefore, she does all fingering with two fingers.  

She loves to play the cello! She plays many different types of tunes from movie theme songs, worship songs, fiddle tunes, to classical pieces.

How did you learn about the option for a unique prosthesis?

Naomi is a patient at Scottish Rite Hospital. At age two (after we adopted her and brought her home from China) she had surgery at Scottish Rite Hospital on the left arm.  She was born with it more in a backward position.  The surgeon broke her arm, turned it towards the front, then pinned it in place.  She goes yearly for evaluations but is doing great. She has attended the hospital's Hand Camp three times.  It was at one of these weekend camps that I heard about Dwight at Scottish Rite making unique prosthesis.  We made an appointment and explained that we wanted her to hold the bow with the right hand, but the digits could not hold on to it.  He had to mold and make a unique prosthesis for Naomi that allows her to hold the bow and play.  She is on her third one (as she grows, he molds a larger one). Dwight is an amazing person.

What other interests does Naomi enjoy?

Naomi loves to read, build with Legos, play with Nerf guns, draw, kick around a soccer ball, shoot baskets with her basketball, and ponder things. She thinks deeply about things. 

She also made a specific point to say that she loves playing with her new brother, Jeremiah, who was adopted 2 months ago—also from China. Naomi was able to travel to China for his adoption trip with 2 of her sisters. It was a great experience for her to visit as this was her first trip to China since being adopted at age 16 months.


We would like to thank Naomi and her mother, Alicia, for taking the time to share her inspiring story. She has overcome many hurdles already and we can only imagine all that she will accomplish in the years to come. Please join us in praying that an upcoming surgery won’t slow her down for long!

We love hearing from families and celebrating milestones, accomplishments, and the many talents of the wonderful children who have become sons and daughters through the China Waiting Child (WC) Program.

If you are interested in learning more about the WC program, please reach out to our China team at China@awaa.org.  You are also welcome to complete a FREE PRE-APPLICATION and a China team member will reach out to you to share more about the program and answer any questions you may have.

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