Sunday, November 4, 2012

Charlie's Story Part III

Charlie’s story is almost identical to more than half the population of Uganda. How is a young boy supposed to earn a living with no parents and a jjaja who is too old to care for him? He made his home Nakasero Market where people have known him for more than 20 years.

Before leaving Nakasero today, Charlie carefully disconnected the raw wires that powered his land line phone and wrapped it carefully with a plastic bag (just in case it rained). He put those phones in a big bag and took that bag to someone for keeping overnight (likely paying him for such safekeeping).

We boarded the taxi for 1,500 each, then took a boda for 1,000 each to his home. Every day Charlie spends 5,000 UGX on transportation from home to work. Remember he’s making 250 UGX per hour (at least during that one hour I was there). You do the math.
What does your door look like?

Charlie lives in Namavundu, a suburb of Gayaza just outside Kampala. He’s working to build his own house but, honestly, he’s been working on it for a looooong time. There are still no doors or windows, the floors are dirt, and there’s no plaster on the crumbling brick walls. Now that I think about it, there wasn’t even a door to secure his family.

Charlie thinks he’s about 32 years old but because his mother died when he was 14 he doesn’t really know for sure. He never knew his father but he had a kind stepfather, although he left after his mother died. Charlie’s grandmother took care of him and sent him to school for as long as she could but he never finished high school

Charlie is one of dozens in his slum community who face the same challenges. Your dolly sponsorship and lots of prayers will change this whole community.