Mary is the last born of 10 children, of which only 6 are still living. Her mother is still alive, but is 65 years old. Her father has passed. Her mother was never educated and has gotten to an age where she simply can not do any type of work. Mary is the child, student, and bread winner for her family. Although to you and I Mary may look like a young middle school girl, due to necessity she is also a business woman. She has her own business selling carrots in the local market. Because things are so difficult at home, Mary’s daily meal is the one provided through African Vision of Hope while she is at school. After school she quickly makes her way to her job, hoping to sell enough for the day to be able to afford putting food on the table for her mother. Life for Mary and her friends is very difficult. As she tells you her story she expresses joy for all she has, but is also concerned for her friends in the market. She is quick to point out there are many girls her age who sell ground nuts (peanuts) and kasava each evening near her. On there way home they have to walk through several dangerous areas and being raped is a reality they face in their world. Mary is so pleased to be attending school and is praying for a better future. Reading a book is one of Mary’s favorite activities.
It is easy to see that daily survival for Mary and her friends is very difficult. The majority of her friends from the village are not able to afford to go to public school and survive on a single small meal per day – primarily made of nshima – a staple that is made of ground white corn flour boiled in water. By being in school Mary is not only having her mind “fed”, but she is benefiting from a nutritious meal each day he is in school. The majority of these children live with a single parent or relative. Others have been forced to live with whomever will take them in, and being forced to the streets by the age of 6 is not uncommon.
Mary and her friends not only have physical poverty but they a poverty that can’t be seen. They have lost hope and do not believe that their life matters or that they matter. This is why African Vision of Hope is different.
African Vision of Hope takes the message of John 21 and puts it into action.
- “Feed my lambs” – We take that literally and ensure a daily nutritious meal to each student.
- “Tend my sheep” – Our staff is caring for the “least of these”.
- “Feed my sheep” – Our education not only is of the highest standards, but is centered around sharing the Hope of Christ with each child.
This is your opportunity to partner with us in making a real and lasting difference in Mary’s life. Your financial partnership has a tangible benefit to Mary, but to Mary, what she really desires and hopes for is a sponsor that will begin a relationship with her. You will be able to write to Mary, to encourage her. You will receive letters back from Mary as she updates you on her progress. You will also have the opportunity to meet Mary face to face during a summer mission trip. Mary desires to know that someone cares for her, thinks she is of value, and needs