My name is Miriam. I was born in Kitui County Katutu location in a family of four girls. We did not know our father so the only parent we knew was our mother. She was not educated and used to do manual labour to fend for the family. Life was simple and we had our basic needs met. My siblings and I were attending a government school near our home. However in the year 2004 my mother started ailing. She was treated in different hospitals and at times she could recover and continue with life but as time went on, she started falling sick often. This meant that she could not work and therefore there was no food for us. We started by having at least one meal a day then eventually there was nothing to eat. When we came from school we found our mother still in bed unable to do anything. Life had changed drastically. In the year 2005, my mother’s health deteriorated and she was admitted in hospital. She stayed there for a few days and then passed away. Following the death of my mother, our neighbors did not want to relate with us. We later heard them saying that our mother was HIV positive and therefore they did not want to associate with us. Through the help from the church and relatives my mother was buried and her hospital bill settled. After the burial everyone retreated back to their homes leaving us destitute. We had no food and the hunger pangs were biting. I still remember how we sat down and cried for hours hoping a miracle could happen and food would appear. Since the miracle did not happen, my elder sister gained her strength and told us we have to look for a solution otherwise we would surely die. She suggested that we walk to our grandmother’s house which was many kilometers away. Without bus fare we had no choice but to walk. We eventually arrived at our grandmother’s house late in the night. She welcomed us and gave us food.
She tried to take care of us but she was old and frail so she had challenges feeding four mouths. We stopped going to school and started doing manual labour to survive. The little money we earned was barely enough for anything else apart from food. It was very depressing for all of us especially because we could not attend school like our age mates. We all knew that our fate was sealed and we would end up poor just like our mother since we could not get an education.
On Sundays we attended church service wearing our tattered clothes and sat at a corner so as not to mix with the smart people in church. One day a leader of the small Christian Community noticed us and came to talk to us. He was very sympathetic about our situation and promised to come visit us. Our grandmother started ailing and was bedridden. This complicated our difficult life further. One week passed and the man from the church had not come. We knew that he was not going to come. We continued with our manual labour but my little sister had to remain behind and take care of our grandmother. One day as we were working in a nearby farm my sister came calling and said we had visitors. This was unusual because no one visited us. We ran home to see who the visitors were hoping and praying that they would have good news for us. To our surprise it was the man we met in church earlier accompanied by a beautiful smartly dressed lady. He invited us to sit together with our sickly grandmother and discuss our situation. He said he had heard from neighbours about our plight and was very concerned because we were not attending school. The social worker asked questions and talked at length with my grandmother. When they were leaving they gave us money to cater for our food and promised to return in three days. True to their word they came back with a vehicle and relocated us to a beautiful place in the interior called Nyumbani Village. We were amazed when we saw the number of buildings and the number of children residing in this home. We were warmly received by the manager and staff and they told us that our days of suffering had come to an end.
We were allocated a beautiful house together with our grandmother and we were enrolled in school. This was the happiest day of my life. All my burdens, pains and suffering had come to an end. I could not believe that I would wake up in the morning, have breakfast and go to school. Having three meals a day was unimaginable. I joined Hotcourses primary school class five and three years later I did my class eight exams. Surprisingly enough I managed to get a good grade and I joined Lawson high school. In the year 2014 I completed high school education. In the year 2015 I was admitted to Jeremiah Nyaga Technical institute where I am currently pursuing a certificate in Food and Beverage. To this day when I look back at my life and what I have been through from a very early age I do not believe it. Through the assistance of Global Giving my sad life was transformed. Going to school had because a distant memory but this sponsorship you have given resurrected my dreams and afforded me success. I can now dream of having a good job after college and being able to cater for my needs. You restored my dignity and made me whole again.
Kindly receive my eternal gratitude. I hope and pray that I will also be able to help someone who is suffering in the society as a way of giving back because I understand exactly how it feels.
May Almighty God bless all those who have made contributions to Global Giving. Please be assured that your funds are making a huge difference in the lives of children like me.
Global Giving is a funding organization for which Nyumbani receives donations for tertiary education. If you would like to contribute to the education of Nyumbani children like Miriam, visit our Global Giving page here.