In 2014, a family in Aledo, Texas decided to support me and my family. They did not even know us. They had only seen my picture with my mom. Why would they do this? Why would a family halfway around the world care about us?
When I was growing up, my mom and my brother and I had a really tough time of it. I barely remember when I was first invited into the Adera Daycare. I was only two. But I do know I was not a good kid. I was always mad and hated everyone. But slowly I felt loved. I felt accepted.
It took my mom some time to learn that she could experience love, too. She had been hurt by so many people in her life and she did not trust anyone. She had been forced into a child bride marriage to a man three times older than her. She ran, literally ran from him to the city of Addis Ababa. There she moved in with her uncle and worked for him as a house maid. But his wife felt threatened by this young girl’s presence and pushed her out into the streets to support herself. My mom had no one, she felt completely abandoned. She began to clean houses and thought this could provide for her, but it made her completely vulnerable to the owner’s desires. She found herself pregnant and alone again and “positive,” with a disease that promised to rob her of all hope. Hungry all of the time and with nowhere to stay, my mom and her newborn son foraged the town dump for daily scraps of metal or plastics to sell for food. It makes me sad to think how small and helpless my mom was, living on the streets, a victim to people who might harm her. Once again, a bad man did. And this time she found herself pregnant with me.
Afraid and hopeless, my mom sought out help from the local government who introduced her to the Adera Foundation. I remember her tightly holding my hand in hers as we walked into this strange place. I didn’t want to go. I was very young, but we had experienced so much hurt. I wondered; would they invite us in. Or would they ask us to leave? Would another person hurt my mom? Would I ever see her smile?
As we walked through the gray metal gate into a small courtyard filled with children and caregivers, I immediately sensed a place that was welcoming. Yet, I did not trust any of them. Why should I? No one had ever been trustworthy before. But I felt my mom let go of my hand and in it she placed a warm pancake. My hunger was bigger than my distrust, and the sweet soft taste melted in my mouth. Then I opened my eyes wide to the new idea of play! I rarely had the freedom to eat or to sleep, much less the freedom to play. I looked up at my mom and saw her cautious smile. She talked with the caregiver and then left. I was scared! But my stomach was full, and eventually I felt safe. Looking back, I can see that I was beginning to experience what it was like to feel loved.
It has been over nine years since my family joined the Adera Foundation. I am now in Grade Six. I am doing very well in the private school that Adera pays for me to attend. Like most kids, I struggle in some of the subjects. But Adera’s teachers offer the help that I need. Along with my daily school, I attend Sabbath School every Saturday, where I learn about the love of the Lord. I now know He sees me; I now know He knows me. And I see something I wondered if I would ever see. I see my mother smile as she says goodbye and heads to her job at the Adera Bead House. Like me, my mom feels safe, she feels secure, she feels loved.
I now have the answer to the question I asked long ago when I was a small child. Why would someone halfway around the world care for me and my family? Because the Lord, who sees me and loves me, told that Texas family about me and my family. And they said yes to Him.
– Ashenafi Zegeye
Adera presently has 44 families ready to be sponsored!
The Adera library is in our community center and allows us to cultivate the education aspect of Adera’s 3 E’s (Economics, Education and Eternity).
Pray with us!
Pray that the newest Adera families will be fully sponsored for the coming year of 2024!
Pray for the opening of the Adera Academy
Pray for our dads as they begin to study the word of God.
Pray for wisdom for the Adera board as we step out in faith that the Lord’s will will be done in the Korah community to bring help and true hope.