Thursday, October 18, 2012

Egidio - My East Timor man

I have a new baby...

Indirectly I have found a new source of mummy-flummery in Egidio, a seven-year old boy who lives in rural East Timor.

He is barefoot and desperately poor, he is handsome, he is beautifully made and he is very, very cute. This is a child who receives sponsorship from Plan. And I am proud to say that I am his sponsor.

Egidio has three brothers, three sisters, and lives in a house with a turf roof and an earth floor, he cannot attend a school as the nearest one is too far for him to travel to.

Egidio is the same age as my twins and was born just a few months after them in 2005 - their lives, however, could not be further apart.

I am not allowed to send Egidio books, pencils or paper - although, of course, I desperately want to. I have to content myself with letters, pictures and cards and hope that through them he may have some sort of connection with us, his sponsor family, who live more than 7,500 miles away in Blighty.

Here he is:

His picture sits on our fridge and every morning we wish him Good Morning and I look at him and wonder how it can be that we are fat with food and safety yet he will, everyday, be out in the fields helping his parents to farm cassava, rice and other vegetables so that they can eat. He will help fetch water and firewood and will work his little non-existent socks off so that they can survive and prosper in, what to us, seems such a primitive way.

 Working with Plan and supporting Egidio, gives my children a unique insight into a life that is so hard to understand. Yet we already talk about and try to grasp what is his life in comparison to ours and it is a beautiful gift for my, very fortunate, family to see this and for us to have Egidio in our lives.

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