A day with Kgothatso
When I first laid my eyes on her, l saw a typical happy girl child who in spite of her disadvantaged background, is determined to live life to the fullest.
She smiles at me and says “hello sisi (sister)”. The time is just after 7am, but this dark and lovely girl is already at school. It’s clear she has been expecting me. And even before I properly introduce myself to her, she quickly introduces me and my Sponsorship Officer Colleague to her school mates….and in English says to them “These are my visitors from World Vision that I was telling you about”.
She is very excited that she is the one who has been chosen by the ADP to represent her community.
As we walk away from her school, Makgwahleng Secondary, where she is doing grade 10, she shows me hawkers just outside her school yard. “These mothers benefit from WV’s workshops – where they are taught how to run their small businesses, ” says Kgothatso. Adding, their presence nearby is very helpful to them as learners as they no longer have to walk long distances to the shops to buy snacks during break time. “There are so many ugly things happening here. Children are raped and kidnapped, so we are sometimes scared to walk long distances,” she said.
Then a teacher from her school comes and joins us. She then introduces her as her best best teacher and tells us “I have requested that she accompanies me today as I’ll be showing you some of the WV projects here in Meltz (where Kodumela ADP operates)….and I know she will enjoy seeing them too. She loves to help people,”added Kgothatso.
“There are so many things that World Vision has done in our area, you will see, let’s go,” she says.
On our way to visit our first project, we started chatting. I then asked her to tell me about herself. To my surprise this girl has been on her own from a very early stage in life. “My mother never cared about me, it’s my grandmother who has always been there for me, and I’m grateful, because if she was not there, I don’t know where I’ll be today – maybe I would have died”, she says. This time her lighting face has totally changed. She looks very sad, and eventually cries.
“My life has been very difficult. Being abandoned and ignored by your mother is a very difficult thing to deal with – because the feeling stays with you all the time, “ she says with tears.
As she continues with her story, I realise this child has been severely hurt and carries so much disappointment towards her mother – who is currently in a critical condition in hospital.
However, after attempting to commit suicide, she through World Vision’s interventions has now found God and is a dedicated Christian, preaching Hope to other children and even adults.
So we get to our 1st stop – Mamokaile Primary school. Through Kodumela ADP’s relationship with the Cholsey community in the UK, the school principals visited the U.K. to learn amongst other things about the school models used in the UK. The school principal is now using this model at her school to improve the learning skills of pupils especially with regards to Mathematics and English language. As a result of this intervention, the pass rate has increased from 28 % to 58 %. Mamokaile has been receiving awards for being a good example of a school that practices poultry and gardening in the school, all for the benefit of children. “Imagine if many of our school were cooking healthy meals like the one the learners get here – there will be no child going to bed hungry,’ says Kgothatso.
Right after we visited Metz lower primary school. “Children at this school now enjoy clean water both for drinking and washing hands, thanks to Kodumela ADP for donating these fancy water containers, “ she says pointing at them.