Here’s a sentence that can make your heart stop for a beat:
“He says their parents ran away from them.”
I leaned toward Mama Dailes, who mothers 14 orphans at the Arise Africa home, and asked her to repeat what she had just translated.
“Their parents just left them on the side of the road. He thinks they ran away.”
Lord give me strength to not fall into a puddle of tears in front of these boys.
Here’s the gist of what we know:
Brothers Lovemore (age 8) and Munyunda (age 6) were abandoned 10 months ago on the side of the road in a neighborhood they didn’t recognize as their own. Many said they had been there for weeks. A stranger took them to social welfare. Social welfare put them on TV to see if their parents would come back to get them. They didn’t. The boys were sent to a transitional home where it was inevitable that the brothers would be separated.
When Arise Africa heard the news a few weeks ago, the general rally cry was, “Not on our watch.”
Monica, who is in charge of all social work at Arise Africa, picked them up from the transitional home to make sure these brothers would stay together — as a family.
No one hesitated. They just responded.
I probably would have handled things differently. When I heard the story, I felt frustrated. My heart ached. My eyes welled up with tears. I wanted to drop to my knees. I wanted to grab both boys and never let go. I wanted to scream, “ARE YOU KIDDING ME?” to Mama Dailes. I wanted to be able to comfort them, but they don’t speak English. I wanted to find their parents and shake them and ask them HOW CAN YOU JUST WALK AWAY FROM THESE FACES? I’ve wanted kids my entire life and you just walk away from the two you have? These perfect, precious boys? You have to be OUT OF YOUR MIND.
Instead of saying or doing any of that, I just stared at Lovemore and Munyunda as Mama Dailes shared more their story.
“They think they see ghosts at night.”
Come again Mama Dailes?
Apparently, the power source of the solar panel in the home has two glowing green lights that they can see from their room. Of course this looks like a ghost when two kids are huddled together in the dark. They’ve never lived in a house with electricity or running water. Who knows if their home had walls or even a roof. Glowing green lights are what nightmares are made of. Who ya gonna call?
I told Mama Dailes to tell them that I was a Ghostbuster and that I had removed all paranormal spirits from the grounds.
Note: Africans don’t typically “get” sarcasm. I’ve been a hot mess the entire time I’ve been here. They don’t get my jokes and my approval addiction is suffering big time.
So after telling Mama D that I was a Ghostbuster and she needed to tell the boys that all was good, this sweet woman looked at me and said, “I told them that Jesus lives in this house and He will protect them.”
That works too.
For the first couple of nights, Mama Dailes would pull the boys’ mattresses from their beds and put them on the floor in her room to help with their night terrors. Heaven help me. The past few nights, the brothers have migrated back to the boys’ side of the house to sleep with Fred who has lived in the house since 2010.
God bless Fred.
At this point, I’m an emotional mess. I smiled, pat the boys on the shoulders and went to the bathroom to cry for a few minutes. Then I washed my face, took a deep breath and asked myself, “What would Mama Dailes do? What would Fred do?” Then it hit me.
Don’t hesitate. Rise up. Make a difference however you can.
So here I am, stepping up to the only platform I know that may be able to make a difference in the lives of these special kids.
I would love for people who are reading this post right now to consider sponsoring Lovemore and Munyunda. For $50 a month, you will be added to each boys’ team with other sponsors who give financially in order to transform lives. For $50 a month, you can provide two brothers with nourishment, shelter, clothing and lots of love. For $50 a month, you can help me teach Fred to be a Ghostbuster to keep the kids safe.
These kids have been in the home for two weeks. They are still figuring it out. I want to run up to Mama Dailes and celebrate the fact that the financial burden of Lovemore and Munyunda is one less thing she has to worry about today. To learn more about the brothers, and Christine, click HERE.
Don’t hesitate. Be bold. Rise up.
“Because I rescued the poor who cried for help, and the fatherless who had none to assist him.” Job 29:12