More than 6,000 children lose a parent to AIDS every day.
That's pretty astounding, isn't it. That means in less than two weeks, more children in Africa lose a parent to AIDS than there are people in my town.
I used to think that I would have to wait until my own children were grown or older, before we could do any significant work in Africa. Bob and I both dream of living there one day, having a farm, and traveling the region doing good works. Yeah, yeah, I've seen Out of Africa one too many times. But it's a dream that hasn't died for us in many years.
My sister in-law, a woman of amazing strength and faith, has shown me how I can make a difference right now in the life of a child in Africa. She and my brother in law have had an "adopted" child from Kenya for several years now. It goes far beyond sending in a check to a faceless charitable organization each month and leaving it at that.
Here is an excerpt from a letter sent to my sister in-law and her family from their "son," Ngilimo.
“Dear sponsor T. and T.,
Greeting from your beloved sponsored child. I am fine and hope some to you. I am very happy that you sent me 100 us $ that enable me to buy one padlock, metal box, 1 pair of uniform, one shirt and geometreax set. It also assisted my family with one sheet, 2 kgs of beans, 3 kgs’s sugar, 1 pkt tea leaves, 2 bars soap, 2 tins cooking fat, firestone shoes, 1 pair of tins, tw packets cooking darir (sp?) and one mattress. We thank you and keep praying for you. This year I am in grade 5. Wishing you the best,
He includes pictures he drew of an oxen, car & barn, and a photo of him and his mom with all of the items they bought.
My sister in law tells me they have received even more sentimental cards from him about how they have helped change his life by sending him to school and providing for extras that he wouldn't normally be able to have. She even sends gifts to him in the mail, and after all these years not one has failed to reach Kenya. On their 'fridge at home is a picture of Ngilimo, and her boys pray for him every night, and they dream of traveling to Kenya one day and seeing him in person.
Don't make me get all Sally Struthers on your ass and post a video of myself crying over these kids. Just go check out this website and see how easy it is to make a difference in the life of a child. We're doing it. My girls have begged me to adopt a 12 and 10 year old, and that is just what we're doing. I'll report back on that next week.
p.s. look what Philanthropy Thursday won ---------------------------------->