In a country where 25% of the people live below the poverty line, and in which most families live off 50 cents per day - it's all too common to send a child away for work in the country of Nepal in hopes of bringing home more income to simply, survive.
These facts are not just statistics on a piece of paper or articles to catch up on the world-wide web. These facts represent actual families, actual people who live vastly different from us. And their stories are real.
To think that so many live off of less than one lollipop a day is beyond saddening. But thankfully hope still likes to make an entrance.
The village of Nuwakot, Nepal, is where this incredible story of hope begins - and it starts with a small family living in a tiny cottage off the riverbank of their rural community. Burdened by the worry of survival, and the sudden loss of her husband, it seemed the mother’s only option was to send her 15 year old daughter off to work. She even considered sending her two youngest children away to live a new life in a better home.
All hope seemed lost until a Global Family coordinator heard about the situation. She knew something had to be done.
She sought out stakeholders in the community in efforts to support the family in their time of need, and set up meetings to brainstorm ideas on how they could help. Members from the village came together each meeting with thoughts, plans and suggestions on how the family could survive and stay together.
The community agreed that the family should relocate from the riverbank to a more accessible place. Though the family, nor any one person in the community had the means to provide a new home, a miraculous set of events began to occur.
A political leader in the community volunteered to provide a small piece of land for the family to build on, while another member hopped on board to supply materials to build a house. The local church pastor provided his masonry skills to build the home, and a school teacher offered her teaching skills to make sure the children kept up with their school work. Even the local school administration got involved, and decided to waive all of the children's school expenses - while another member agreed to supply some money for the mother to start her very own business.
In the midst of difficult circumstances, it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. But despite the weight of this family's burden, it was nothing compared to the amount of hands that freely offered to help carry it. It's a beautiful thing to witness, isn't it? The offer of another's hand for help? It's even more so beautiful when the action inspires the chain reaction of another hand, and another, and another - preventing the loss of two beloved children and a 15 year daughter to child labor and other forms of exploitation.
Even though it can be hard to see the light in the darkness, thank goodness the community members of this village in Nuwakot tried their best to find it... creating not only hope in their little corner of the earth but also a story of hope to be told for generations to come.