Letters of Desperation
Trip Start Jun 28, 2013
62Trip End Aug 25, 2014
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The community is strengthening their trust in me. It is clear through their interactions and in the letters I have received over the past week.
The first a letter of hungry desperation, a mother of 4 with no money for rice. Her husband working as a grass cutter, makes only $1.50 a day on most days. But 1 kg of rice costs $1.00, and only feeds them for a day if they are lucky. How can she help her family survive on so little?
The second a letter from a woman who has helped me so greatly with the entire project, asking for help getting her store started. Money to stock the store and make it profitable
The third from a grandmother who has been left responsible for her granddaughter, who's mother has gone to a bigger city to work as a house helper to make money. Although the income is only enough for food, and she hopes her grand daughter can continue to attend school next semester. A plea for sponsorship.
The fourth, a young girl passionately asking for help so she can continue to finish her studies next year. Her father was murdered earlier this year, the culprit is still unknown. Her Mother left her and her sister, taking two of their siblings with her, years ago to be with another man. Her grandparents who now care for her sister and her are actually not biological parents of her father, because her father was abandoned by his parents and the couple simply took him in and brought him up as their own. Her grandparents want her to go to school, but by next year they will only have enough money to sustain their food and the school fees of one of the sisters. She is the elder, so she will be the one to stop school. Another plea for sponsorship.
I have 6 children waiting in line for sponsorship already.
My brother asked me How do the needs not overwhelm me? I have not answer to this question. Sometimes they do overwhelm me, unbelievably, to the point where at this very moment I tear up just thinking of them all. But when I force myself to take a step back and look at each need individually, recognize each person in front of me, I am able to problem solve to my best ability.
Tomorrow I will buy a sack of rice worth roughly 2000 pesos, more than some men in Cangumbang make in a month, to give to the old woman for her store. Her profits will hopefully allow her to stock her store.
Starting in the end of October, when the harvest season begins again and the money is plentiful, I will start a savings program. I will start with the woman struggling to feed her family, allowing her to put money aside now, so in the future she won't be in this situation again. Although for now, I asked if she would wash the center's towels and I would pay her to do it each week. Of course she agreed.
As far as the other two are concerned, all I can do it wait. For the older girl, I have until next June, along with one of the other 6 children in line. For the remaining 6, and all the countless children who are waiting for the day I ask them to be interviews, I hope and pray. Next month we will be adding 3 children to the program, so I am hopeful that with each month I will find more sponsors for the children. And soon, each family will have access to sponsorship.