Sunday, February 05, 2012

Determined to Succeed

During our years in Zambia, I heard many heart-breaking stories from students who came to apply for sponsorship. But the story of Aaron touched me once again with the reality of how hard life can be for the children of poverty.

Ellie Hamby tells Aaron's story: Aaron comes from a village not too far from Namwianga. His parents abandoned him when he was young, and he survived by staying in the village and getting help from whatever source he could find. In 1998 Aaron was bitten by a Cobra and had to have his leg amputated. He is a very determined young man, and against all odds went to the village school and did well by studying hard. The only way he paid for his education at a government school was to go around begging for help with his school fees. I was in Zambia last August and met Aaron for the first time. He walked five miles on his crutch from the town of Kalomo to Namwianga Mission. He came to me to ask for help with his school fees for a government school in Kalomo. I asked him why he hadn't applied to Namwianga, and he said his scores were just a few points below the required score. I asked him how he was doing in the government school, and he said he was one of the top students and did much better than other students who had higher scores. He carried a letter in his pocket from the school to back that up. The church leader from his village said he was a strong Christian man and was very active in the local Church of Christ. When I asked Aaron if he would like to come to Namwianga, he responded with tears in his eyes and said that would be one of the best things that had ever happened to him.

Aaron is now at Namwianga Christian High School. A generous sponsor has agreed to pay for his education, and I am sure he will do well.

There are others with stories of need--perhaps not quite as dramatic as Aaron's, but many students have no chance of getting an education without help from someone. If you are interested in sponsoring a student at Namwianga, please e-mail me at

George and Jason Head for First Grade

George and Jason are first graders now! They are shown here ready for their first day of school on January 17. Note the spiffy uniforms--I love the sox especially! Jason was already reading a few words last June, so I know he's ready for this new challenge. George will keep the teacher laughing by his antics. A whole new adventure begins for these two!

This photo was sent to us by James Mwale, the new housefather at the orphanage. We appreciate him for helping us stay informed about these two special guys.