Despite the heartbreak she’s already experienced in her short life, Juliet is quick to smile and laugh. One thing that helps that quick smile reach her eyes? The love she finds at her local Life Center!
13-year-old Juliet lives with her sister and grandmother in Taboga, Kenya. They have a one-room hut, with mud walls and a thatched roof. They rely on a small vegetable garden for food. Juliet helps with the weeding and planting. During the rainy season, their garden flourishes, and they have plenty to eat. But in the frequent dry spells it’s hard to make anything grow.
Juliet’s grandma dotes on her granddaughters, and does everything she can for them. But she can’t replace their parents. That’s where Juliet’s heartache lies. She lost both her parents when she was little, and she still feels the loss and unfairness keenly.
She doesn’t remember her dad much, but she remembers her mom. She
says she was a very tough woman, and also a good mentor. We’re guessing Juliet gets her strength and compassion from her mom!
Juliet says her biggest challenge is living without her parents. Sometimes the grief is almost too much to bear. And even though her grandma loves her very much, Juliet confesses that sometimes she feels like a burden, adding extra work and stress to grandma’s old age.
With all that pain, where does Juliet’s laugh come from?
A few years ago, Juliet started attending the Life Center in Taboga. And it’s been such a blessing for her!
“When I come to the Life Center,” she says, “I know I will meet people who show me love. So that’s why I look forward to coming…every Saturday.”
The loving Life Center staff taught Juliet a memory verse that has always stuck with her. Psalm 118:21 says “I will give you thanks, for you answered me.” And Juliet is learning that our awesome God always answers her.
“I asked God to wipe away my tears,” she says. “I still cry because I miss my parents, [but] it has become less.”
Kids like Juliet are why Life Centers are so important. Kids who are hurting or grieving need the comfort only God can provide. And putting consistent, loving mentors in their life is the best way to guide them there!
Praise God for the Life Center staff in Taboga, Kenya who are modeling Christ’s sacrificial love for Juliet, week after week. And praise God for His faithfulness, that extends even to a 13-year-old girl in need of comfort.
Childcare Worldwide is grateful to partner with generous people all over the world to build a better life for kids in need. If you’re interested in supporting kids like Juliet through their local Life Centers, click here.