When poverty puts a child at risk | Guest post at A Child’s Voice
I serve on the Advisory Committee for A Child’s Voice, a non-profit that advocates for the rights of children in Uganda and across Africa. Today I had the honor of guest posting on the ACV website, telling a story you need to read…
Imagine you are a mother of eight children. You are a widow. You are HIV positive. You live in a wood shack in a slum in a city in Africa.
How would you earn money to feed yourself or your children? How would you survive?
Today we want to tell you the story of a mother named Maggie and her daughter Rose. Maggie is a mother of eight children. Her youngest child is a baby named Rose. Maggie is HIV positive. She is a widow. She and a few of her children live in a slum in Kampala.
In order to provide for her family, Maggie cooks and sells food at a shack several hundred meters from her home until midnight. She leaves her young children, including her baby Rose, with their big sister at night while she works. This is the only way the family can survive.
About three months ago, Maggie was selling food late at night to provide for her family when tragedy struck her home. Rose , then just six months old, was home with her ten year old sister. Their house – a small, wooden shack – burst into flames. Maggie’s older daughter cried out for help and escaped being burned. Baby Rose, however, was engulfed in the flames.
The neighbors pulled the baby out of the fire, but the shack burned to the ground.
Rose survived the fire, but she is badly hurt.
She has scars from burns all over her body.
She has lost most of her fingers and all her toes.
Rose cannot close her eyes when she sleeps because her eyelids have fused open.
Her face was badly burned and her mouth is deformed. As a result, she can only drink liquids.
To read the rest of the story and find out how you can help, click through to A Child’s Voice.