An End to the Pain: Emma's Story

04/23/13

Everything in Emma's life seemed to be fighting against her. It started when she was just a baby. Her father died when Emma was one, leaving her family devastated. From that day on, food and clothing were everyday struggles for Emma and her three older siblings. "It was really hard to have two meals per day," she remembers.

 
When Emma was eight, people like you began to sponsor children from her village, though Children of the Nations' (COTN) new Village Partnership Program.  Thanks to her sponsors, Emma began to receive meals and school supplies, helping her get enough to eat every day and stay in school. 
 
But two years later, Emma's world crumbled again. Her mother died, leaving Emma with only her older siblings to care for her.  Just ten years old, Emma moved in with her oldest sister, who had a family of her own to raise by then. When her sister, who had no means of income, got divorced and moved her young children and Emma into a tiny rental home, Emma says she thought she would never smile again. 
 
"I began going to school on and off because of the challenges I was going through at home," she says. "This affected my performance in school. Sometimes, I was forced to stay home to take care of my niece because my elder sister was busy searching for informal jobs to support the family." 
 
The last straw came when Emma's family began pressuring her to get married. For young girls in Malawi, this is often their last hope to get out of poverty. But it rarely works out. 
 
"I remember I was being pushed to stop school and get married to a butcher," Emma shares.
 
But thanks to you, Emma had learned the importance of education. She knew she had a hope and a future because of all the people supporting her, and she didn't want to give it up for the fleeting chance of finding a husband who would support her. "I refused to get married because I knew it would be the end of my future," she says.
 
Instead, Emma shared her struggles with the COTN staff members she had come to know and trust. They recommended she come to live at COTN's teen girls' home, a full-care program for older girls who need extra support and protection.  Today, Emma is living in the teen girls’ home and attending COTN's secondary school. She hopes to become a journalist in the future. 
 
"I like COTN because it brought an end to the pains I was going through," she says. "I no longer suffer the way I used to." 
 
Emma also shares that your support has taught her a lot about the love of God. "I have learned that God is love, and that everything is possible with him." 
 
You can help a child in need like Emma. Sponsor a child in Africa or the Caribbean today.
 

Comments