I hope to post some shots from various days of our Easter Week - here are some from one of those days. This day, we went to visit Chrisie Platt's "daughter", Esperance. A lab technician from our hospital recognized her about a month ago, and told us he had discovered her parents were not dead, as Esperance had thought, or at least as she had told us. She hadn't lived with them since she was 7 years old, when she left to find a better life, because at her home, there was so much poverty that she was always hungry. So she left. We took her home to her family, along with a lot of rice, beans and etc, a few weeks ago. Then, this past week, I took Ruth, Stephen and Sam with me to go back to her village to check on things and also to bring her family a pig, which could be a real help to moving out of poverty. Pigs are relatively cheap animals to raise, as they'll eat about anything, yet they have many babies quickly. Once they have babies, they can raise one to eat, give one away (it is tradition to give one pig to another needy family if you've been given a pig yourself) and sell the rest for income.
Esperance didn't initially want to return to her family, but when we visited her this last week, she was happier than we've ever seen her before. She's adjusted well in her re-entry, and her baby sister is especially glad to have her home. They are inseparable! Also, her older brother, age 17, had also returned home. It seems word travels fast when there are beans and rice in your house!
So, we are now having school uniforms made for the younger and older brother, who will all be going to school starting in May - the 17 year old is in 2nd grade, along with Esperance (age 12). The 7 year old younger brother is in 1st grade. We hope the older brother and Esperance can advance through their grades quickly, and within a year or two, can be closer in grade with their peers.
|Ruthie holding baby sister, who was wearing the same dress she wore when I went 3 weeks ago. |
It is her only clothing. Zipper in back broken. No shoes. (So was the mom. )
|The shepherd for the pig was all smiles upon making the "sale" of the pig and going with us to delivery her!|
|Stephen presented two Bibles and two hymn books to the family.|
|Esperance is all smiles as her grandmother arrives for the pig presentation.|
|Left to Right: Little brother, grandma, mom, dad, big brother|
Front Row: New pig! :)
Missing from picture: Esperance and her baby sister, age 3
|Sam and an older lady in the village|
(Pictures from 3 weeks ago...)
|Inside Esperance's house (government issued home, given to the extreme poor), she was clearly unhappy.|
|Sweet baby sister, born after Esperance left the home 5 years ago. Note the dress. She loves her big sissy already!|
|The bedding where the ENTIRE family sleeps. The size of a twin mattress on the dirt floor. Using a|
UN donated mosquito net for padding over the twigs tied together to make the "mattress".
|It was so hard to say goodbye to Esperance - she was so sad.|
|With Esperance's dad. Esperance is almost as tall as he is.|
|With Pastor Wikana (right) and the lab tech who recognized Esperance and found|
her family. He accompanied us to return her to her family.