"The Lamp", a story written by one of our Swazi SuperStars
I was born the 1st of November 1994 by an unmarried couple. My mother was still a teenager. My parents separated and I was left with my aunt at the age of two, both my parents abandoned me. My father was a heavy alcoholic and my mother was still enjoying her youthful life.
At the age of five, my mother died, I was still young then, so it made no sense to me, because I guess I was still little to fathom anything about death. Everything was normal, I did not even notice that she was no longer with us because she was never in my life. They say you never miss what you never had. After the death of my mom, my dad gave me some affection which was long overdue, but I was still staying with my aunt, so I did not spend much time with him because he never stopped drinking. After a while, he stopped visiting me.
At the age of eight, I started schooling. By that time I was staying with my grandmother. I was much older than most of my classmates because the standard age to start his/her schooling journey is five years old. I was the brightest student in the class and I was also the most underprivileged kid in the entire school. I wore torn uniforms, walked barefoot and sometimes attended school with nothing in my belly. I had close to nothing and yet I wore a smile on my face and acted as if nothing was wrong in my life.
I managed to survive and completed my primary school because I was registered under the government orphan and vulnerable child free program. A few months later my grandmother died and that was a bitter pill to swallow and I guess a part of me died with her. I never felt so alone and more desperate, it was as if I reached the end of a road.
So I felt I had no choice but to go stay with my father in his stick and mud house. Life was never easy, we had nothing to eat. Not because he was incapable of providing but because he didn't care. I woke up each morning not knowing what to eat but that did not stop me from the dream of being an accountant even if I was not aware of how I would afford secondary school let alone university tuition.
Out of the blue, there was an everlasting bright lamp in my dark life the day I met the incredible GHFP organization! My life changed for the best, it still feels like a dream, I got to wear a pair of brand new shoes, new school uniform, and endless food! All of my school fees were taken care of. Annie not only took care of me but also gave me so much affection. I owe my whole life. I got the privilege to experience a mother and child relationship because I could confide in her and she listened with undivided attention. She stood by me my entire life and had faith in me and told me I could conquer the world and those were the most encouraging words I have ever heard.
Ever since then my life has been a paved road. I have GHFP, a family that loves me more than anything in the world. Sometimes it still feels like a dream that GHFP is working tirelessly just to see me happy and give me a brighter tomorrow. They say God closes the door and opens a window, to me it's as if he closed a window and opened a gate.
In 2011 my father died, I won't lie it emotionally drained me even though he was never there for me that does not change the fact that he was my father and he will forever be. I loved him so much regardless of at times when he was still alive it felt to me as if he died a long time ago. He left me with nothing to inherit, no house, nothing; however, I had enough strength because I have family - the likes of Kait, Annie, and Tyler just to mention a few.
Everything went well at school and the incredible GHFP donors made sure that everything was good. I remember the first time I saw a movie with the GHFP group. It was the first time I ever set my feet in a cinema, it was so amazing! I remember like it was yesterday. We also eat so much pizza that we are actually in heaven. Sometimes I feel like this is all just a dream.
In 2013, I graduated from school, got good grades, and was accepted at the University of Swaziland. GHFP paid for my tuition and book allowances. Am really living my dream through the support of such angels! I am now finished with my second year of University and look forward to starting my 3rd soon. I now live a purposeful life and I know what I want. I want to honor GHFP's work by doing great in life. I want to make them proud. I want to follow their footsteps and one day help underprivileged children and brighten their future.
In conclusion, I want to thank all the supporters, donors, and sponsors of Give Hope, Fight Poverty. Without your support maybe me and the other children would have turned to crime, drug abuse, and maybe some of our girls into prostitution. I got to be loved so dearly, I have a new family now, and I even have a new baby sister Tinlie Lihle! God blessed me greatly, not because I am a suitable candidate but because of His grace. Thank you so much for your support, for keeping us in your hearts. Your work is brilliant and is making an impact on the Swazi nation. A dream you dream alone if just a dream, but a dream we dream together is reality!