As you know I’m not a mother but I try and show “motherly love” in other ways. For a few years I have been sponsoring two children through Plan. I decided to sponsor a boy and a girl. The boy from Africa and the girl from China.
I got a letter at the weekend which made me cry buckets. It’s a letter that I’ve had before usually about the boys. All parents want is a better life for their children and this often involves migrating for work. This is what I’ve experienced from the boys – I’m now on my fourth boy. However their moving on although was sad didn’t effect me as much as the news of my Chinese Girl.
My first letter from her was in 2008 and she was 11 years old. She loved school and was very bright. Her letters were full of her enjoyment of school, the subjects she enjoyed and when she started studying English I wrote back peppering my language with a few colloquialisms. She was interested in my life and mentioned how beautiful the mountain village she lived in. She wrote of her worries of making her parents proud and how hard she studies were getting as she progressed through school.
I knew my time was getting short – after a child turns 18 the sponsorship stops. I told her that her studies would pay off and how proud her parents should be with a daughter turning into such a great young lady. She wrote back saying that she had moved to a bigger town to study – a college that would prepare her to work in medicine. What type of role I’m not sure. She missed her family but I wrote back saying that this was an adventure, an opportunity not to be missed. Her last letter was written on behalf by her father saying thank you for my letter and that she was still enjoying her studies.
Now I have the migration letter. The family has moved on. Both of her parents were peasant farmers and as we know China is a fast developing country. With her studying away I like to think they’ve moved nearer to her and have got themselves a better job.
In the migration letter is an introduction letter to a child that they suggest I sponsor. It’s a girl living in China. Presently she is 5 years old. In the picture she is standing holding the edge of the skirt she is wearing and she is biting her lower lip like young children do when they are unsure. In the next picture she is being held by her mother and is much happier. Her mother is slightly older than me and she is a peasant farmer. In the photo her face is lined and her hair is grey. You can tell she has had a hard life.
The sponsorship money goes towards helping the whole community by providing education, health and sanitary facilities. This will hopefully mean she will have better opportunities to a better life than her mother.
I’m grateful that I’ve had this opportunity to be part of her life and I’m looking forward to getting to know the new girl and hopefully see how her life pans out.