‘My sponsor helps me to go to school and makes sure I have food to eat’ – Ayenyo Oliver Cavira, aged 9.

14463836_10153710175096441_1512535461_nAyenyo Oliver Cavira is in grade 2 at IGF’s main primary school in Kitgum. Her father died from HIV AIDS when she was only a few months old, and her mum also died when Cavira was only 4 years old. She had been living with her aunty in a village until the start of 2016, when she came back to Kitgum to stay with her three sisters (aged 11, 14 and 16). As a child-headed family it was difficult for them to look after themselves and go to school, so their aunty moved to Kitgum to help care for the youngest ones.

The four sisters and their aunty stay together in one mud hut, all sleeping on the ground on mats. The hut which is only about 2.5m round, also has the small ‘kitchen’ where they cook. They rent the hut at about $10 a month, which is often a struggle for them to afford. With four children at school, and their aunty, means there are many mouths to feed and school supplies to provide. The kids all work during the school holidays and often on weekends. They sell fruits or make small pancakes which they sell in town for less than 10c each.

Cavira has to collect water after school each day from the borehole which is about 1km from their hut. She likes going to school and has been performing well this year. She says that she likes reading and wants to be a nurse when she is older. One of the problems she has though, and that most children have, is that they don’t have electricity connected to their huts, so once the sun goes down at about 6:30pm they find it very difficult to read or do homework.

Cavira says that she is very happy that she has a sponsor who helps her go to school, and that she can get food at school each day. Many of the other schools in Kitgum don’t provide meals, so if she didn’t go to an IGF school she thinks that she would not have enough to eat. Cavira told us that she was happy to meet her sponsor earlier this year when they visited IGF, but she was very nervous and didn’t know what to say. In her recent report to her sponsor, Cavira wanted them to know that things at home are still ok, and that she is trying her best at school.  She said that she is very happy to have a friend helping her from Australia, especially since she doesnt have her parents.

You can help support a child like Cavira by sponsoring a child through IGF’s child sponsorship program. Helping to provide access to education, nutrition, and medical care can make a big impact and provide endless opportunities to a child in need. Not only that, but you can show a child that they are valued and  loved, despite their circumstances.