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Our First Days Back in Korah - By Gioia Morris

So TIA (this is Africa)... How do I sum up our first few days in Korah - How can I adequately describe to you what these days have been like...?  I don't know that I can, but I will try to give you a glimpse:

Walking through the streets of Korah is not something I can easily describe to  you - the paths are muddy and littered with unidentifiable "things".  It's been very wet since it's the rainy season and homes get flooded regularly.

We've visited some of the homes of families that have been sponsored through our Hope for Korah family sponsorship program and the difference we see in these families is remarkable. Hope has returned to their faces and their eyes light up as they greet us and welcome us into their homes.

I was introduced to one particular family (not sponsored) whose members are living in destitute conditions and you can't help but have your heart broken by their stories:

This family lives in a 'dark hole' - with no windows- muddy floors - 8 people living in a very small space - a 2 month old naked baby lying on a makeshift bed with a wet blanket barely covering him - his mother desperate because she has nothing to provide for him or herself.  she spends
her days at the city garbage dump scavenging for food and any scraps to sell - two of the other 4 children living in this home spend their days running through the streets of Korah - the 4th child - a 10 year old girl that looks more like 6 sits quietly next to her blind mother.  It's Sunday today and that is the only reason why they are home.  At least 6 days of the week this blind mother wakes her small daughter before sunrise so that her daughter can be her "eye" as she leads them both on a long and tiring walk into the heart of Addis Ababa.  Here they sit day after day on the crowded sidewalk begging, hoping to get enough money to buy some food for the day - they sit there until it gets dark.  This little girl has been named "Light" because she literally is her mother's eyes.  She's become a slave to her mother's blindness and has no hope of ever breaking this cycle of extreme poverty.  I can't help but think about them and wonder will we possible find a sponsor for them?  How wonderful it would be to give them the good news...

I had a chance to finally be reunited with my 14 year old "Ethiopian son" his name is Eyasu.  Only one year ago he lost his mother to AIDS and spend all of his days at the garbage dump looking for some food for himself and his 2 year old brother.  Now- one year later - after having spent a year at boarding school because of me sponsoring him, he's a different boy - he has grown so much and our reunion was one of the most beautiful experiences of my life.  We hugged and embraced each other, both in disbelief that we were looking into each other's eyes - his English is still very weak - but we really didn't need to speak much - there was this unspoken understanding between us - love flowing that didn't need explanation.  Having to say good-bye to him will be... I don't even want to think about it yet...

I also had the privilege of meeting a young girl - barely a teenager who was sitting in the girl's shelter - guilt by Great Hope Ministries here in Korah - she is all alone with her 5 month old son... only three months ago her baby was near death - dying of starvation as she had no breast milk to feed him - now lying quietly on a bed in a shelter feeding her baby a bottle of formula provided by Great Hope. I have the privilege of meeting her and am humbled just by being in her presence.. what does her future hold - what life will her son have...??  No one knows...

Tomorrow will hold new stories, both difficult and joy-filled... we are looking forward to meeting  with all of our sponsored families together at the Great Hope Church.  Our plans are to share with them the details of sponsorship along with the good news that they all have sponsors who are committed to walking alongside.  The leaders of Great Hope will be emphasizing that they are all important and we all believe with God's help and the support of their sponsor, each one of them has the ability to break the cycle of poverty they are living under.  They do have a hope and a future!

Both Great Hope Ministries and Hope for Korah are amazed and thankful to God that in the 2 1/2 short weeks since launching the Family Sponsorship Program; all but one family has been matched with a sponsor!!  These thirteen families combined, total 80 people and we trust that God will soon provide a sponsor for the one remaining family.

Stay tuned - internet & power permitting, we will be posting another update in the next few days...


  1. Thanks for sharing the beautiful stories. Praying for God's loving hand to be with you and to guide you to the lives He wants you to touch. I wish there was a magic wand to wave away all the despair and heart breaking stories of these dear people.
    Praying for you!


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