25 October 2015

Better To Own Something Than Be Owned By Someone. Family #8: Mama Victor

A brief recap:
One of the largest factors of trafficking in persons--especially in the developing world--is poverty. A lack of means to provide for their families leads people to accept "too good to pass up" employment offers, often at the expense of freedom and dignity.

If only 2% of trafficking victims are ever rescued (and 80% of those rescued will go on to be trafficked again), if a true count of victims is unknown (and seemingly unknowable) because the crime is so well-hidden, then the most promising solution must be prevention.

With a stable source of income, families and their children will never need to search for employment in places that may take advantage of them. And so, I've launched a program to provide business opportunities to local families. I believe it's better to own something than be owned by someone.

So far, I've introduced you to seven families {here and here} and, over the course of this week, I'd like you to meet four or five more. {This afternoon, we're trying to make it to see two or three...and I can't wait!}

Since long recaps are overwhelming {for me to write and for you to read} I thought I'd break it up and introduce you to one family at a time.

First, here's the beginnings of seven farms. How fun is that?!

Each time we load up the car with items like these, I am giddy with excitement to bring them to the families. Imagine someone handing you a gift that will generate income to both sustain your child's health and development AND relieve that stressful "where will I get the money to...?" feeling that, for many families all over the world, is a constant.

What a joy it is to be able to give these types of gifts thanks to your generosity and support!


We have found that Sunday afternoons seem to be the best time to visit, since nearly everyone is home resting and preparing for another busy week. So, last Sunday, after church, we headed out to see six families: three first visits and three follow-ups.

Mama Victor // seeds

Victor {in the red and blue beanie} is 8-years old and was born with Schizencephaly, which, essentially, means one side of his brain never developed. {His brain scans are completely dark on one side.} His mother, Phoebe, had him at fifteen and, though she loves Victor very much, she struggled to provide him with the level of care he needs.

She and Victor live with her mother and younger siblings, but with the adults at work and the kids at school, Victor was often left alone in the house all day. And so, a few months ago, he came to live at the Precious Kids Center. {Read more of Victor's story here.}

Phoebe visits often and even brings his younger sisters and grandmother {seen above, on the left, holding Victor's youngest sister, Faith} along when possible.

Victor knows his mom's voice and will instantly smile and laugh as soon as he hears her walk in. One afternoon, as she and I sat in the living room and she held Victor {then Julius and Isaac, two boys who, like Victor, can not sit on their own and need to be fed} and I held Faith {because, look at how cute she is and excuse the fly on my head!} we tried our hardest to make conversation through my beginner's Swahili.

This young mother has done her best to care for her son. That afternoon, I saw the depth of her love and compassion as she held her son, and other children whose stories she does not know, but whose struggles she can identify with. When she left, I knew I wanted to help her family begin a small business.

During our visit on Sunday, Phoebe and her mother explained to us {well, to Sammy, who translated for me...I'm getting there, but still have trouble translating at the speed of excited chatter} about the crops that grow best in their village. {Since they are far from the river, they prefer plants that don't need much water.} Her mother even ran outside and brought back samples of the crops to show us.

So, this week, we'll be picking up the seeds and delivering them to this sweet and loving family! I am really excited to show you their progress and follow along as both the farm, and Victor, grow.


If you would like to be part of changing the trajectory of the lives of families like these--with a one-time gift of $30--you can do so in one of two ways:

// Tax-deductible giving //
Checks made payable to Reaching Beyond Ourselves can be mailed to:
Allison Hibbard
c/o Reaching Beyond Ourselves
39 Donatello
Aliso Viejo, CA 92656

// Online giving (non tax-deductible) //
You can give via Paypal: allihibb@gmail.com

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