He is one of those kids everyone knows by the end of their visit at GSF and one of the most requested kids to be sponsored. He is happy and personable around strangers. But several years ago, those of us on staff at GSF knew something was missing in his life. . . A Family.
As a baby, he was left at a different children's home by a woman who only left her first name and a village (the name of which was misspelled). His feet were turned and he was unable to walk and was labeled as lame. He was soon brought to GSF where he eventually was taken to have surgery so that he could walk and run like a normal kid. When he reached 13, our social worker, Keren, went on a mission to find this friendly boy's family. She took the first name of that woman and went to the village that she assumed was the right one since it was misspelled on the paperwork. She began asking boda (motorcycle taxi) drivers and store keepers if they recognized this lady's name. Eventually, she found someone who knew a man who had a sister by that name. She was taken to that man who then took her to his family. As she talked to them, she found out that woman by that name had four children. One of them was lame. She had taken him somewhere in Jinja but the family did not know where. As Keren talked with the family, the pieces all began to fit and she knew she had found the piece that was missing in this boy's life. . . A Family!
What a beautiful day when this boy was told that his family was found! The last year and a half, he has spent going "home" during the holiday and building a relationship with his uncles and grandfather. He especially enjoyed spending time with his grandfather and hearing stories of the past. It hasn't been easy getting to know a family you never knew you had, but he will tell you it has been a blessing.
This week, I had the difficult task of sitting with that boy and telling him, "your grandfather has passed." We got word on Tuesday morning, that his beloved grandfather died. He and I talked about how grateful we were that he had the blessing of knowing his grandfather. He told me, "grandparents are an important part of a family; they have so much information." Later that day, before he left for the burial, he walked into an office where Mark and Keren were meeting. He looked at Keren and said, "Thank you, Auntie Keren for finding my grandfather.
I indeed believe this is a miracle story for a boy that had very little time to get to know his grandfather and more about his family. God knew that and brought them together before the grandfather died!