When the Care Workers in Macadeira, Mozambique harvested their own 400kg of maize, they felt an enormous sense of pride. After all, it was their many hours of work in the field, under the blistering African sun that finally paid off. But the work was difficult and the premature ceasing of the rains meant that their beans failed, but the Care Workers were unified, even in their challenges. This group of willing volunteers have come together to do something transformative in their own community.
Maria, the coordinator of Tariro Community Based Organisation in Macadeira is leading by example, visiting the most vulnerable children in her community. When she walks through her community, she does so with the love and hope of Christ in her heart. Maria knows that many people in her community seem to have given up hope: their situations seem just too bleak. When Maria met a little girl and her family in such a situation, she responded out of compassion in the way Christ had taught her to. SarahThe little girl, Sarah* was living with her four sisters, three brothers and ageing grandmother in a wholly inadequate shack that was too small to properly house them all. As Maria was introduced to each desperate member of this family, she wondered just how they had been surviving. She learnt that Sarah’s father had passed away and her mother, overwhelmed with the burden of caring for eight children alone, abandoned the family. Fatiansa, Sarah’s grandmother who is 80 years old is the only relative these children have remaining.
Though frail and weak, Gogo Fatiansa ploughs a small plot of land adjacent to the family’s home, affording them a small amount of vegetables during harvest time. But feeding nine mouths proved impossible for Fatiansa to do alone.
Through the Care Worker group in Macadeira, Sarah and her siblings now gather with them each day to receive a hot, nutritious meal and grow in confidence and identity surrounded by positive role models. Maria also brings this love into the family home when she visits them twice each week, praying with them, encouraging them and reminding them that with their Heavenly Father, there is always hope.
*Child’s name has been changed
Updates from Macadeira:
- Care Workers seek out and care for the most vulnerable children by visiting their homes, but each community also needs a care point, a safe place where the children and their caregivers gather together, share their struggles and carry one another’s burdens—this is called a Life Centre. 50 children visit the Macadeira Life Centre daily to play, receive care and eat a nutritious meal.
- In 2011, 14 Care Workers established the Tariro Community Based Organisation to respond to the desperate need in their community. Many children were dying of hunger and health problems, including malaria, HIV, TB and hook worms. Towards the end of 2013, an emergency feeding program was established to provide for the 30 most vulnerable children. By May 2014, 50 children were receiving a nutritious meal every day, as well as health care and education support which included home visits from the Care Workers.
- A need that has been identified amongst the children is school shoes. The Care Workers plan to meet this need over the next quarter.