“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope”. Jer 29:11
Carmen is an 11-year-old girl growing up with her mother Josina and her six siblings. Her father abandoned the family sometime before and their home was almost non-existent, the entire family was sleeping in one room under a single mosquito net on a mat. Carmen was 8 years old when she was identified and enrolled in The Peace School as part of Life Child Mozambique and this began a new chapter in her life and her family’s life.
Due to often extreme vulnerability, many girls like Carmen often face additional challenges as they grow up due to the many daily family demands. Young girls are often encouraged into prostitution, premature unions, intro traffic transfers within families and other people with the belief that greater opportunities will be provided, but very often are not. In Carmen’s case, she was sold by her estranged father to a person in another region, she was 10 years of age, however, due to the close follow up of her teacher together with the Life Child team who is passionately committed to seeing a change in these areas and the reduction of intro-trafficking in our communities. Carmen’s family was contacted and together the work of mediation and council began, she was able to return to her family and was also able to return to school and her studies.
As educators, when we view our children in the light of their full potential and maintain a close connection from child to home and community, it has been our experience that many of these potential situations can be avoided. We are able to create solutions together that will enable the child to remain within the safe care of family or an accountable substitute family where they will not be subservient. Instead, the child is allowed every opportunity to study and grow up to achieve their full potential and bring change to their own communities tomorrow.
Today Carmen is studying in grade 4 and doing well, she is a great student and she is excited about her future, she wants to go to university to study to become a teacher so that she can help other girls like her in the future,
Girls have the right to education as do the boys. Educating girls so that they can make informed choices regarding all aspects of their lives is so important. Educating and discipling girls to know Jesus in a personal way saves lives and builds stronger families, communities, and economies.
Through the economic strengthening of this family they are now able to provide for their needs and their small business as they work together for their common good. They are growing in their Christian walk and the local church will continue to accompany them as they trust God with their future plans. Carmen today looking forward to a bright future.