A while ago, JeanAnn came across an old lady – c80 years old who was busily washing her little orphaned grand-daughter in a tin tub outsider her hut.
Inside was the young grandson who had undergone the daily scrub. The hut was immaculately tidy, as was the surrounding yard, cooking area and even the rubbish tip. What touched us deeply was the way in which she cared so well for what little she had. However, the state of the hut was beyond her ability to maintain.
We realised that we could walk away shaking our heads and saying ‘What a shame, but not our responsibility’, or make a difference. We did the sums, counted our resources and started to assemble the materials.
The next day we arrived with a truck loaded with the necessary materials, and watched the old lady collapse into the arms of Felix, our CEO when he told her why we were there. Within hours we had set out the base and began to build the walls.
We were delighted that a couple of neighbors joined in to help and worked alongside our builders without any request for payment. By the end of the week the house was completed, all but the cement rendering to protect the bricks from the heavy rains that were due in a couple of weeks.
We were able to move the old lady and the two children that she was caring for into the house.
A picture of the donor now hangs in her home, within a week of starting.
“Why me”, she asked “You are not my brother nor my family or village. What did I do to deserve this?”. Well, all we could answer was “God loves you”. In the end there is no other answer; but we had the privilege to be his hands, feet and decision makers in bringing joy both to the lady and to the one who first showed love to us.
If this story touches your heart, remember that you can be a part in providing the answer to a long-term problem. Visit My.give.net/gfnuk (Our donor wept when he heard the story and saw the pictures).
We visited the old lady a year later and found her very sick. A short time after our return to UK she died, leaving the two grandchildren without support. We searched for help and have engaged a young woman to visit daily and care for the children who we now feed and sponsor through school.
Stories like this one never really end. They turn the pages and new chapters begin. We believe that our intervention helps to ensure that the story continues with hope for these children and many like them. We know that the problem is large, but that is no excuse to walk away without doing something for those who touch us.