“I am really suffering. I don’t want this to happen to my children.”
Childhood, for many of us, are days we think back on with fondness. For the orphans and vulnerable children living in extreme poverty, childhood equates to burdens much too heavy for them to bear. When hearing the plea of Emily, a 25 year-old mother of three, we knew the world needs to hear her story.
Emily’s family sold her into childhood marriage when she was in the 7th grade. This is mistakenly thought of as the only solution for “a better life.” Instead, Emily found herself without an education or any skill sets. Early every morning, she leaves her three young children at home, Owen (age 7), Esther (age 5) and Grace (age 1 ½ ), while searching for odd jobs in the village. Emily is never certain if she will find work. If she does, the small earnings are used to purchase all she can to feed her children. She finally returns to them after dusk. Their dinner of porridge is nothing but ground corn and water. It is hardly enough to fill their bellies and provides little to no nutrition for their small bodies.
During the rainy season, the family of 4 must all sleep on the one mattress they own. The water pours in through the damaged tin roof and soaks the mud floor. They wake up wet and cold, hoping the sun will dry their sheets before enduring the next night. This is the life Emily wants to escape. The only way out is for her children to attend school and complete their education – something she cannot provide.
”Growing up I wanted to be a teacher, I feel bad that I had to drop out of school. I will live to tell them my story so that they can learn from me.”
Emily is a mother desperate for her children’s lives to look different from hers. She wants them to grow up healthy, educated, and escape the cycle of poverty. YOUR gift can help break the for Owen, Esther and Grace.