“… but she doesn’t know her daughter’s birthday and doesn’t understand why anyone would need to know because nobody celebrates birthdays in the slum” Tim Crothers’s narration in my current read ‘The Queen of Katwe’, is a close depiction of the life I’ve lived.
As I celebrated my 24th birthday yesterday, it dawned on me how eventless and unnoticed this day was years ago.
These were days when Martha, my twin sister, mum and myself would know that we have an anniversary to merry over. Of course, it was with thanksgiving prayers and a potful of boiled raw maize cobs and pumpkins.
The advent of Facebook now gives a few friends a chance to scribble “hbd’ on my wall. To those so caring, maybe sending a little gift.
As I grow, there is more to life than just me. The first three months have opened my eyes to acknowledging noticing the struggles of others and reaching out.
With help of virtual and real life friends, I started an initiative to help send needy secondary students in Salima, my home district, to school.
I wrote an appeal on my previous blog; My Story, Their Story where I asked well-wishers to help me save some 20 students from being chased out of school.
I am so grateful to all friends and supporters who sacrificed their money and achieved the objective.
As I write, the 20 students are in school because of your various donations. I am grateful!
Then why am I writing this on my birthday?
I have met students with sad stories. Teachers who are sad because a best forming student in their class dropped out.
Headteachers who have lists of students who did not report for their Form One after being selected.
I am saddened. Prospects of these youths with potential quitting school because of poverty force me to write.
Then, a thought came to me and my five friends; Peter Yollam, John Namalenga Jnr, Doreen Ndovie, Ezelina Kamaliza and Morton Sibale to come together under the banner of Education Support Initiative (ESI) and committed that we will help these kids go to back in class.
Each of us is making own initiatives to at least find people to sponsor at least one student. The school fees per term range from K10, 000 ($13) in community day secondary schools to K46, 000($65) per term boarding secondary schools.
With this blog, I aim to find sponsors for 14 students from Malowa Community Day secondary schools who may not write their end of term examinations because they have not paid their tuition fees.
As a belated birthday gift to me, please celebrate with me by sponsoring at least one student from Malowa Community Day Secondary School.
Are you up for the challenge?
I’ll send you a list of the 14 students from the school with their stories and a photo, and from there you can choose one or many students.
I know my friends don’t disappoint. Help me celebrate my birthday.