Eastern Courier : May 4th 2016
More petrol station robberies p3 Mother’sDay activities p24 Wednesday, May 4, 2016 Helping to transform kids’ lives in Peru MEGHANLAWRENCE It was an emotional experience when Ed and Jan Astill met their sponsored child in Peru. Alexandra Flores Roque 18, ran down the steps and flung her arms around them as if to welcome long lost family members. The East Auckland couple have been sponsoring Alexandra for three years through the Christian aid organisation Tearfund NZ. During some overseas travel in January, they decided to make a stop at the small mountainous community of Chosica. ‘‘You get to know them a little bit through writing to them, but to actually see them in person and to know that they are flesh and blood, it just makes everything so much more real and so much more personal,’’ Jan says. Alexandra lives with her mother in a squatter community on the side of a barren mountainside. ‘‘People come into these larger places for work and they can’t get work or find anywhere to live, so they squat illegally on these mountain sides and build what they call houses,’’ Jan says. Rain in the area often causes mud slides, ruining homes. ‘‘The government have actu- ally dug gullies so that when there are mudslides, they try to chanel Rain in the area often causesmud slides, ruining homes. it away from the houses. Sometimes it is successful, sometimes it is not,’’ Ed says. Alexandra’s house has no run- ning water, no toilet and no cooking facilities, and their electricity is run from a line connected to the neighbour’s house. The money she receives from the Astills provides her with food, hygiene education, schooling, stationary, and training in cooking, crafts and bible studies. She’s completed high school and is now training to become a bank teller. ‘‘If she is fortunate enough to get a job it will help her to support hermumand to get out of this awful cycle of depravation,’’ Jan says. Ed and Jan have seven other sponsored children from Ethiopia, Uganda, Rwanda, the Philippines and Bangladesh. Help a child now Tearfund’s ‘TheWait is Over’ Campaign hopes tohave 500 children sponsored during the month of May. Goto Tearfund.org.nz to find out more or to sponsor a child. YOUR PLACE, YOUR PAPER Ed and Jan Astill from Cockle Bay visited Alexandra and her mother at their home in the mountainous community of Chosica.
April 29th 2016