One morning before the new school year began Esther, a young teenager, came by Chikumbuso asking for school funds. This is not our normal protocol for choosing children for our program so I went out and sat next to her and told her that I was sorry but she could not be part of our sponsorship program. I had been told that she was not living in the same slum that we have commited to helping. She actually lived a few miles away with her grandparents.
Esther looked at me very matter of factly and told me that she was not leaving Chikumbuso until I promised to find money for her education. Her english was great and her determination even better. As her story unfolded I learned that she had been going to school up to this past year but had to stop when her only surviving brother died of AIDS leaving her with elderly parents unable to help with the cost of school. She had no one else that could help.
School was obviously being taken seriously by Esther.
This is not always the case and over the past year we have realized that if we are to use your gifts wisely we need to do some monitoring and evaluation of our educational program. This past month we were blessed with some volunteers that came and did just that. We had to eliminate a few students but one of the best results that came to light was that each and everyone of our Seventh graders were receiving A's and B's and that they were, hands down, the top of their class!
Thank you all for helping with this program as we continue to send orphans to school who would not be going with out your support.
P.S. Our principal checked out Esther's story and she is now back in school through our sponsorship program!
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