Friday, February 3, 2012

It brings tears to my eyes

Just before Christmas I wrote about my friend Peter Lojore.  You can read his story here:  Peter's story

In December I didn't realize that there would be this kind of a follow up story; one that brought me to tears yesterday.

Peter spent about 10 days in the hospital.  He had broken his right leg which was casted.  Thanks to a Christmas check from a grandmother at home, I was able to pay for all of Peter's medical expenses.  As I went to find Peter a pair of crutches I met a hospital administrator that recognized me from when I brought Peter in.  Normally, a pair of crutches would have cost about 5000 Shillings with at the exchange rate then would have been about $50.  This admin offered me a pair that was in great shape and used once for 1000 shillings (about $10).  Peter left the hospital that day with a cast on his leg, fed and with a pairs of crutches. Unfortunately, because of his injuries Peter was unable to go back to his job and has been forced to beg for money and/or food in the streets.  The more I talked to Peter over the past couple of weeks the more it became clear that Peter really wants to work and get off of the street.  Here's where it gets good!

On Wednesday of this week I sat down with my friend Daniel Juma.  Juma runs a children's home just a few minutes away from here.  He specializes in working with street boys.  In fact, many years ago Peter actually lived in Juma's home.  There were some issues with the missionary sponsoring Peter at the time and eventually, Peter went to live with a local pastor.  The pastor ended up not taking care of Peter and that's when he took to the streets not knowing where else to go.  I talked to Juma about taking Peter in if I could find him a sponsor.  The organization that I am partnering with in Kitale, Transformed International, agreed to handle the sponsorship funds that came in for Peter.  Juma was very excited about the idea but asked me to first talk to Peter and make sure he would be willing.

Yesterday I met with Peter in the afternoon and asked if there was a family he would want to live with.  He mentioned Juma and that he would like to go back there.  When I told him that I would make that happen for him his smile was so bright!  He was so happy that he was forcing back tears.  I left town that day in tears with how happy I was that this was becoming a reality.  All I was left with was the task of finding a sponsor.

After putting something up on Facebook, I am pleased to say that Peter's sponsorship is now set!  Soon, Peter will can move into Juma's home - a 5 acre farm.  There, Peter will have a job of helping regulate the water supply to a greenhouse that Juma is building, something that he can do while sitting down and finally resting his broken leg.  As his leg heals, Juma said he will give Peter a section of the farm to grown a crop to sell and begin to support himself.  During the first month Peter will be given a bed, a mattress and a blanket.  More importantly, Peter is being given a chance to LIVE.  He is being given a family that will love him and care for him.  A family that will not judge him for being a street boy.  He's being given the life he was meant to have back.  Three days ago Peter was a 23 year old street boy with a very bleak future ahead of him.  Today, Peter has hope of a bright and happy future.

I think of the life that Peter will now have and it brings tears of great joy to my eyes.

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