Saturday, March 9, 2013

Hardships for Girls

A few days ago we went to deliver a gift to a young girl who was in our sponsorship program. Her former sponsor had sent money to purchase a gift and when we called to inform her we would be making a visit we found out that she had just given birth. The gift we had planned to purchase quickly changed to something that would meet the needs of her and her family. We packed up some grain and baby items and soap and headed over to her home.

While we were there we learned that the father of the baby was living with another woman and claimed that this child was not his. After a visit to Social Action, the man admitted that he was the father and said that he would take responsibility by paying for the care of the baby. Actually collecting any money has been impossible thus far.

There are many young girls who are taken advantage of and then left to care for their babies on their own. The majority of the time the girl is kicked out of the family courtyard because they have brought shame to their family. In some cases the village chief or village elders will tell the grandmother to kill the baby. Fortunately, this is not the case for this young girl. Her family is helping her and she is even continuing her studies at school. She nurses her baby when she is home and her mother gives milk to supplement. This is very hard financially for the family because milk is expensive. Her parents, however, are very proud of their daughter because she is at the top of her class. She is probably the only one in her family to go to school.

If the baby's father decides he wants to take responsibility of the child he can actually take the child away from her mother. This usually happens after the child is about two years old and weaned completely off of milk.

Sitting in the courtyard with this girl and her newborn just broke our hearts. Please pray for her and the multitudes of girls just like her.

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