With Mother’s Day this weekend, we want to honor the mothers who look after us, care for us, support us, and inspire us. Worldwide, mothers and mother-figures alike give selflessly for others and teach us how to be our best selves. Their willingness to take care of others makes the world a better place. So, today our thoughts turn to a few of the loving mothers we have recently met who make the most of what they’ve been given to break the cycles of poverty and suffering for their children.
O.U.R. Partnership Gives Moms a Second Chance
Recently, Operation Underground Railroad’s ops team was able to partner with law enforcement in the successful rescue of 10 girls. Not reflected in that number are the small children these young survivors bring with them out of their captivity. One of the rescued victims, a mother of two, shared that she came out of the experience feeling worthless, ugly, and that no one would ever want her and her children.
“Several hours after the rescue operation, we met her children,” shares a representative from O.U.R.’s aftercare services, “and, even though she was only a teenager herself, it was palpable how much this mother loves her children.” She went on to complete the O.U.R. Entrepreneur Program, became a small business owner, continued her education by going to secretary school, and is now a respected team member in an office.
Just last month, a friend with the aftercare program met with her to check-in. “She and her now 4-year-old daughter both desperately needed dental care,” shares the friend. “Their teeth had several cavities causing them both extreme pain, and she was considering going to a loan shark to pay for the costs. She was desperate to care for her daughter.” Finding this out, our friends at O.U.R were able to access funds donated through the ASEA Advancing Life Foundation to help both the mother and daughter receive the dental care they needed.
Most of these young rescued mothers did not experience love from their biological families and are now learning what it means to be a loving parent. At the aftercare home, they are learning parenting skills, receiving their education, and now have a safe place to raise their family.
The things these survivors have lived through are often unimaginable. After surviving a fire that left extreme burns all over their bodies, several rescued mothers can now focus on being a good mom to their babies. On the anniversary of the fire, which killed 41 of their friends, the O.U.R. team was honored to take them, their babies, and their social workers to a resort for swimming and dinner. Throughout the day, these teenage mothers showed their immense love for their children.
CHOICE Humanitarian Helps Make a Mother’s Dream Come True
In the Intag Valley of Ecuador, a 52-year-old woman named Blanca Susana Castellano Savedra is the mother of 6 children. She and her husband, Julio Rosero, have only received a third-grade level education.
Lack of work forced the family to emigrate to the province of Pichincha. Currently, she and her husband work in agriculture to give their children a better education than they had. However, income limitations meant that only two of Blanca’s children managed to finish high school while the others only finished primary school.
Still, new opportunities are coming to her children. Benito Rosero is Blanca’s fourth son and is now one of the first welding students to graduate from the Inta-Kara Advancing Life vocational school.
Like many mothers concerned about the well-being of their children, she was so proud and happy to know that one of her children received a certification, which would help him compete in the workplace and give him more opportunities to progress.
“I could not have given my son such a course since they are very expensive, and I am grateful for giving my son the opportunity to train at this institution,” said Blanca, “Thank you to the Humanitarian Choice Foundation for helping the people of the area and making it possible to have a Training Center.”
The Difference Clean Water Can Make
This past February during an Advancing Life expedition to Cambodia, ASEA Double Diamonds Sally & Rob Dymond and their team in Australia met a woman who was about to become a mother. Seeing her situation and knowing they could help, they were moved to action, donating a freshwater well and enough food to last her for months.
“We weren’t expecting the extreme poverty we were faced with,” Sally shared. “This woman has been living alone in a shack with nothing and is about to deliver a baby. Her husband has gone to find a job and she doesn’t know when he will return. The well will allow her to pump clean water to safely cook, wash, and take care of her new family. This well will provide for more than 30 people in her village. As a team, we are committed to building her a new house as soon as we can.”
The week after the Dymonds’ team left Cambodia, this woman gave birth to her child in the rural clinic, where she received a newborn kit that the Advancing Life Foundation expeditioners had put together with clothing, diapers, blankets, and soap. She brought her baby home to a house with clean water, able to care for her child.
With clean water to drink and bathe in, and—most importantly, with a loving mother, the child’s chances of growing up healthy are now high. And, because food was provided, the husband and father was able to return home from his job hunt to be with his new family for the first few weeks.
Life Is Changing for a Family of Eight
Another Cambodian family of eight was very grateful to receive clean water and a garden. After only two weeks with the well, they were already feeling much better since their previous, contaminated water source made everyone sick. Yet, dinners still frequently consisted of rats caught in the fields, so, shortly after planting the garden, Advancing Life volunteers paid a surprise visit to the family’s home and dropped off food.
Six weeks after planting, the family began harvesting vegetables from their new garden. They love to work and watch the plants grow. They now produce so many vegetables that they are able to sell the extra produce to the surrounding community. The family has gone from zero income to earning over $19 a week. They are excited to keep their garden growing and their new business successful. The mother now provides nutritious meals for her family and has watched them grow healthier. She is teaching them how to plant and care for the garden as they work together as a family.
To aid families through the Advancing Life Foundation, consider donating the total cost of a freshwater well for only $375 or the cost of a garden for only $150. 100% of all donations go to support field projects like the ones shared above. Donate at advancinglife.org.