Boge remembers well her days as a beggar, spending long days on the streets of Addis Ababa but often bringing home less than the equivalent of an American penny. Her family struggled to survive, getting only one meal a day. With a long-term illness and at the end of her rope, she showed up at our sponsorship office in search of support. When her 6-year-old daughter was sponsored, Boge joined a self-help group.
In her group, she began to grow stronger as she learned about financial, physical, spiritual, and mental health. She took a loan from her group and began selling sugar cane on the same streets where she used to beg. Starting with a $30 loan ten years ago, she now sells clothes and shoes and has borrowed $142 to expand her business. She believes that anything can be achieved if you overcome a poverty mindset because she has lived it.
Boge has not only become a stellar salesperson, but she also participates in her community’s street cleaning project. Hired by the government, she gets up at 5:00 AM every day and cleans the street of Addis before running her own business. Her hard work paid off as she was awarded best worker of the year.
Boge praises God for changing her life with the support from the sponsorship team and her self-help group. Without it, she says, she could have never lifted herself out of poverty and begging. She is now an important role model for other parents, praying and supporting them with the knowledge, resources, and strength that she has gained. She has proven to them that if they are willing to work hard, they can experience the same transformation.