Norwich worker finds needy orphans in Africa
2009: Norwich Christian care worker Victor Gillon from New Hope Christian Centre has been overwhelmed by the desperate needs of HIV/Aids orphans in Mozambique where he is spending six months working. Here, he reports on what he has found.
Based in Nhamatanda, Mozambique, Pastor Daniel Ciatano and his wife, Alice, have no fewer than 60 orphans, between the ages of 4 and 16, in their care. This number has grown from 35 children between 2004 and today. They only have enough sleeping accommodation for 30-35 children and priority is being given to raising funds for building extra accommodation.
In recent months there has been growing concern about the lack of finances available for food. Generally three crops a year can be grown, but since October there has been a major lack of produce in the area because of heavy rains either washing the seeds away, or destroying growing crops.
Pastor Daniel has a field out of town which he uses for growing crops to feed the orphans and to generate some income. However, there are currently no crops and it is too late to plant more maize. Lack of finances also prevents Daniel from being able to replace seeds for any other crops. The situation is expected to continue for several months now until new crops can be grown.
The children have had to be given dry bread and tea for breakfast, in place of the usual porridge, before going to school, and a basic meal at lunch time.
The children are losing weight and their state of dress is also very poor, like something out of Dickens. Although the children are given school uniforms through government funding there has been deterioration in their general appearances in the last year.
Aid was given in the past by World Food Organisation but this ceased after the Tsunami in December 2004.
Currently 23 of the orphans are regularly sponsored through Partners in the Service of Christ
(part of New Hope Christian Centre
) and more sponsors are desperately needed.
The value of the sponsor money, sent monthly, has reduced recently due the poor exchange rate, and £15 per month is needed now in order to feed a child adequately.
If anyone is interested in providing money for the project or sponsoring a child, then names, ages and individual photos can be provided along with other personal details. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.