Monday, June 11, 2007
Thobile - Age 16
You may remember reading way back about a young girl we met at Madonsa. She looked to be about 10 or 11 and was very sick. When we found out she was the same age as our oldest daughter Gabby, we were shocked. She was slowly dieing from AIDS. Maybe she was born with it, maybe contracted it somewhere through childhood. She had been out of school for years: a combination of being too weak and sick to go and a mom who couldn't make enough money selling vegetables to afford the school fees, uniform or even transport to get her there. She was one of the first kids that Children's Cup was able to help get treated for AIDS by providing emotional support and transport to the Baylor's Clinic in Mbabane. The turn around has been dramatic. She smiles now and looks so much healthier. Teresa and I decided to sponsor her anonymously this year and paid her school and uniform fees through the 'Cup teacher at Madonsa. We received a letter from both her and her mom last week. Her letter reads "..... In the name of our father Jesus Christ I thank you for sending me to school. You gave me hope in life, without your intervention in my life I think I would have been dead. Thank you very much for taking care of me by sending me to the doctor now I can feel the difference in my life. May God bless you. Never get tired of helping other sick children." She is in third grade. Her grades are fair (20th in the class of 57). But you know what? I really don't care how she does. She has purpose and worth. Looking at her now vs. last year makes it all worth it. It's your help above and beyond that allows us to step out and do a little extra. So the last line in her letter is really for everyone that supports us in prayer and finances: "I love you and I love God who sent you to my life. From Thobile Lukhele"