Hello. I am very glad to be able to write you this letter. I know I do not write often, nor do I write a lot. It's hard to trust when your current sponsor decides to stop. I wonder if I will ever trust you. My experience has been to keep sponsors at a distance. By the time I trust them, they drop me. And I have to start all over again with another one.
I receive every letter you write. I admit, I do look forward to them every month. Sometimes, I even receive two or three letters. I love hearing about you, about your life, your work, your activities.
When I sat down to write, I realized that I have a lot to say. I have a lot to tell you. If I open up to you, will you still sponsor me?
I have no one to protect me. No one to walk with me after dark. I am 16 years old now. My parents trust me to do the selling by myself. Yet, it's so dangerous. I find no joy in selling in the market. I fear the dark. I fear the terror that the dark brings.
Your prayers for my protection are treasured. Someone else is praying for me. My country is racked by dangers every day. My own community is treacherous. I fear being alone. I see the men eyeing me. I wonder if one of them will wait one day. Wait for the night that he catches me alone. It's not safe to be a girl in Haiti.
I relieve my mother after school. One of my siblings brings me something to eat, if there is any. I must sell everything before I am able to return home. Sometimes, it's not until 2 or 3 in the morning. Every day, I pray for protection. Sometimes, I hear the girls' scrams as they are attacked. I cannot help, for I will be attacked as well. I race home during these hopeless nights. And I weep for the girls.
School work? It gets done when I have time. Sometimes, it doesn't get done at all. I want to finish school, but it's so hard. I see no way out of poverty except through school. So, I keep trying my best.
I fear of living in a home like my own parents, with no way out.
Yes, it's big, but when it rains, everything gets wet. The roof is falling apart. There are no doors or windows. Everything smells of mildew and mold. Rats and insects make their home in there as well. If an earthquake hits, everything will fall. We will be homeless. I pray that this will not happen. I still see the tents, and I fear that I will end up like them.
All around me are the hollow eyes of the hopeless, the stench of alcohol, and the screams of hungry children.
For just a brief moment, I am able to escape the hopelessness my poverty brings. The Compassion project workers treat me like I'm human. They love me there. The church is clean and doesn't smell like alcohol or mildew. We are fed here. No one cries because they are hungry. We are also given school uniforms and new clothes and shoes. If it weren't for Compassion, school would not be an option for me right now. The best part of the project is that we get to learn about Jesus. We get to worship Him. I am not rejected. I am not looked down upon. I am welcome at the project, and even at the church. And, for only a few hours, I can be a normal teenager. I can forget about my fears. I can actually dream and hope. I have hope. Hope that is only found in Jesus Christ.
So, I want to thank you for continually bringing me words of hope and encouragement. I pray for you every day.
I love you,
Even though this is a fictional letter from Mickelene, whom is sponsored, there is a 15 year old girl on the site who also buys and sells in the market. Please consider sponsoring her.
- Age: 15
- Birthday: January 20, 1997
- Gender: Female
- Location: Haiti
- Center: Port-de-Paix Child Development Center
- Child ID: HA3321484