"Granny, where is my mom? When will daddy be back and pick me up?" Those were the questions Jay, who is a kid of kindergarten age, often had in his heart, and the questions which his elderly granny was afraid to answer.
The granny told the visiting social worker: Nobody knows the whereabouts of Jay's mother and his father has been serving a two-year jail sentence for some criminal offence and was just released last year. But as an ex-convict, it is hard for him to find a permanent job so he could only work as temporary air-conditioner installation worker, being paid a daily wage of merely $NTD1,100 (USD$37). Now that the winter is approaching, such air-con maintenance work is even harder to come by.
Before she took upon herself the responsibility of looking after her grandson, Jay's granny was living in comfortable retirement. However, she couldn't bear to see that no one is there to take care of Jay so she decided to do it herself despite her old age and knee problem. She works hard as a temporary worker through government arrangement and has to rush to pick Jay up after finishing her job.
Jay and other families living in the shared accommodation have to use the bathroom in turn by allocated time slot.
Due to the lack of money, the pair can only afford shared living arrangement with other elderly people, with cracking paint on the wall, humble kitchen and shared, bare bathroom. Nonetheless it is home to Jay and his granny where they depend on and share their lives with each other. For the daily 3 meals, they could only rely on the materials donated by the Mustard Seed Mission or other organizations for simple meals. For Jay’s granny, it is such a pity that she couldn't afford the nutrition a growing Jay needs but to share with her grandson such simple food. A while ago when the weather was hot, she had no alternative but to take the kid to nearby convenience stores sitting there until 8pm or 9pm in order to get through the summer heat. It is as if the pair lives in such a corner overlooked by our society, trying their best to survive. However, faced with the economic pressure and the challenges in life, the granny appears to show strain and a bit downcast.
The very primitive and humble kitchen in Jay's home
Through Mustard Seed Community Network, the Mustard Seed Mission offers prompt material aid so that Jay and his granny could receive temporary relief in their daily life. It is especially worth of mentioning that the emotional companionship and support offered by the Mustard Seed Mission helped Jay to grow into an optimistic kid who no longer feels being abandoned. Even as a little kid, he started to help his granny with house chores so granny can rest. With the help from kind-hearted people, granny expressed her gratitude in tears. She taught Jay to always be grateful and remembers to give back for what they received when he is able to do so one day, helping others in need.
The Mustard Seed Community Network will continue to support more children like Jay. We hope that Jay grows into a person who faces life's challenges with courage and overcomes all obstacles fearlessly and become someone who is capable of sheltering and protecting others.
There are still many families in Taiwan which need your help. We sincerely invite you to join this life-changing team to give a hand.