The decision to provide a home for a child is often a complex one. For Christine Chemto, it’s taken several months. However, on January 28th, Christine joined the 16 other residential children of Future Stars.
Christine is not new to Future Stars. She has been attending the free primary school for several years whilst living with her mother in Kibera.
Sadly, Christine lost her father to HIV/AIDS in 2010 and her mother was also discovered to be HIV+. Without the means to afford the necessary medication or the healthchecks and nutrition needed to maintain good health with the infection, Christine’s mother became very unwell.
By the age of 6, Christine found herself caring for her mother as well as having responsibility for most of the household chores. With very little income from her mother’s infrequent ability to work, Christine became reliant on the feeding programme at Future Stars as well as the education she was already receiving.
As Christine’s mother became increasingly unwell, and HIV developed to AIDS, the situation in the home deteriorated further.
Lack of money meant that the provision at Future Stars was the only nutrition Christine could access. Her attendance at school became patchy due to exhaustion and frequent illness. In addition, there was no money for electricity or even to buy candles, meaning Christine was unable to do her homework once darkness fell (around 6pm).
The situation was beginning to look desperate.
Becoming a Resident
For several months, Christine was requesting admission to Future Stars as a resident. With life at home becoming increasingly unsustainable and her mother’s health continuing to deteriorate, it was apparent that action was needed.
Finally, on January 28th 2018, the decision was made for Christine to move into the centre. Her mother, whilst obviously upset, knew that she could no longer provide a home for her daughter. And, in the final stages of AIDS, she wished to leave Kibera and return to her tribal village.
It is almost certain that Christine will be orphaned before her 10th birthday. This is a distressing story, not least because it is a preventable one. With treatment, Christine’s mother could have remained healthy for many years. However, in Kibera, outcomes are very different. The only consolation is that Christine will be cared for and her mother does not have to fear her daughter’s future.
Can I help Christine?
Ensuring Christine’s continued development and education will only be possible with your support. Could you be that special person who supports a child and ensures their development? Sponsorship costs just over £1 a day and makes a huge difference to the future of one of these vulnerable children.
Find out about our sponsorship programme and join the Chaffinch/Future Stars family as the person who can make a little girl very happy.