09 November 2011

Jennifer and Mercy

Birthdays are a big deal at Mattaw Children's Village. When a child first comes into Mattaw they usually don't know exactly how old they are and for sure do not know the day they were born. In a culture of poverty, celebrating life is not desirable. And children are often looked at as a burden and extra farm hands or house help. We are very much about recapturing the essence of being a child again. We want to take back the years of childhood stolen from our children. One of those ways is giving them a new birthday. A month that is all about focusing on their life by celebrating. My daughter Claire is not even two yet and knows the happy birthday song and knows you then blow out a candle. My four year old son has been looking forward to his birthday for several months now. To think that our Mattaw children never experienced that at a young age and didn't how special they are. But what a joy to reintroduce this concept to them.

I have a birthday party for one child from each house at the end of each month. Every time the end of the month nears, they all start talking about whose birthday we will celebrate and there is much anticipation for that day.

We have twins living at Mattaw. Jennifer and Mercy are in house two and we have known about them since before Mattaw officially opened. We were sad to find out that they also had a baby brother and three year old sister but due to lack of food and sickness, they passed away. But we now can celebrate the lives of these two girls, who if they would not have been rescued and brought into Mattaw, they too might have been another statistic like their younger siblings.

Here they are at their birthday party last year....
When we found out about these two girls, we heard that Mercy was sent up to Turkana to care for her grandmother that was dying. Mercy was around 7 years old and was the primary caretaker for her sick grandmother. Jennifer was still living with her aunt and also her uncle who is an alcoholic. The place they lived was often struck with hunger and lack of food in the area. Once a child is orphaned, whoever they live with, family or not, typically sees them as the bottom of the chain and is out casted. Jennifer often went without food.

The Aunt came to us to take the girls in. They hadn't lived together in years. Eventually the grandmother was convinced the let Mercy go and be placed in a better home. It was a sweet reunion when the girls were brought in together to Mattaw. They were inseparable. We are so thankful to bring restoration to them as sisters and also as having the freedom to be a child again.
Meet Mercy, a very sweet and loving little girl, who loves to play the drums during worship at church.

Meet Jennifer, one of our best singers and dancers at Mattaw. She often leads our children in songs and dance.

Please consider sponsoring one or both of these girls. You can contact our sponsorship coordinator, Krysta, at mattawsponsorship@yahoo.com. Or go to our website: mattawchildren.com and click on the tab "sponsor" for more information.

Thank you for those who have already signed up. As a result of featuring those needing sponsorship this month, we have had 25 sign up so far!!!! God's heart is so close to the orphan. He loves his children and provides in ways we couldn't imagine!


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