Stories

You don’t have to be a grown up to make a huge impact in the lives of others. Here are examples of how some very special “kids” took on the challenge of helping other, less fortunate children.
 


 

Samiratou's Story - One of our supported children in the Ngoketunjia Division, Northwest Cameroon

"These excellent results could not have been possible without the support of A Place of Hope Charlotte USA.”

 
Lambi Samiratou (right) reviews her exam scores with Franklin, A Place of Hope project coordinator for NAFI in Cameroon.
 

This is a comment from 11-year-old Lambi Samiratou, a pupil in the Babungo Village's PS (Public School) Mbungwi, in the Northwest Region of Cameroon. Samiratou had the overall best scores (out of more than 7000 pupils!) in the 2010-2011 Government Common Entrance exam in Ngoketunjia Division. She is one of the OVC who has been receiving support from A Place of Hope since 2007. After her father died in 2004, Samiratou's mother was unable to support her six children and was forced to return to the village of her husband’s relatives. Life was not much better there, and the family was forced to leave the compound. There was little or no money to pay for the children’s education.

In 2007, Samiratou was one of the children chosen to receive educational support from A Place of Hope through the Ngoketunjia AIDS Fighters (NAFI), and she has benefited from this support ever since. “There are many other children who can produce better results than mine, but they are unfortunately constantly (in need of money) for school fees and other school needs,” Samiratou confessed. 

She continues, “I was able to produce this result because my studies were not interrupted, thanks to the support I have been receiving from A Place of Hope.” Samiratou prays to God to continue to bless and give long lives to members of A Place of Hope to support children like her to achieve their dreams. “I have three younger siblings who are looking up to me, and my dream is that one day I will become a well-educated woman who will not depend only on a husband, but will be able to be in a position to help other underprivileged children.”

Caroline successfully raised $57.57 selling lemonade in only two hours!
Caroline successfully raised $57.57 selling lemonade in only two hours!                       
Caroline – unheralded contributor in the St. Mark’s Catholic School Lenten Project

Caroline is a fifth-grader at St. Mark’s Catholic School whose imagination and desire to help others were ignited by Jean Millikan’s presentation of the Coins for Cameroon campaign. The combined fifth-grade classes of St. Mark’s adopted the campaign as their Lenten project in 2011.

Caroline’s mom, Melissa, reported to teacher Linda Dunn, “Caroline has been talking so much about Coins for Cameroon at home. This weekend she asked me if she could have a lemonade stand to raise money for the Lenten project. She recruited her best friend in our neighborhood and her brothers to help. People were so kind and generous. Her goal was to raise $50 to send one child to school. She sold lemonade, cookies and brownies for less than two hours and raised $57.57. She was so excited!”

Jean was impressed by the fifth-graders’ grasp of their Cameroonian peers’ plight and desire for an education. “They asked wonderful, insightful questions, and showed that they were really connected to the challenges the OVC face to go to school.”

At the end of the Lenten project the St. Mark’s students will be invited to choose the Cameroonian students they want to sponsor, with the hope of establishing ongoing communication with “their” students.

If you would like to have the Coins for Cameroon campaign come to your school, church or other organization, please contact JeanM@placeofhopescameroon.org.


Emma's Story 
told by Abong

 Emma sits among 100 backpacks she collected.

Emma is a very special child who has the heart of Jesus Christ. At the age of four, Emma was so moved when she was told of the plight of the children in Cameroon that she embarked on her own mission to collect as many backpacks for these children as possible. She knew that they needed knapsacks to carry their books, just like herself and any school aged child.

She started by creating flyers with her mom and going door to door in her neighborhood asking for backpack donations. What's so special about a little girl with a big heart? Well, Emma was born with only one fully developed arm. For most of us that "disability" may have slowed us down or made us focus on our situation – not so with Emma. Her heart is bigger than any challenge. She cares more about children living thousands of miles away than what she must face in her own young life. Wow, what an inspiration.

As a result of her compassion, selflessness and determination, Emma collected 100 backpacks for children orphaned by AIDS. Every time I even think about slowing down, I'm inspired by Emma's heart for others. She encourages me to continue on this journey to help educate and save the lives of children in Cameroon who have the greatest need. Thank you Emma; you are a great example to all of us. Thank you for your kind heart and gentle spirit. The children of Cameroon will wear those backpacks and feel your love.


Eagle Scout, Logan Creech, with his Scout Master, Frank Beal.
Eagle Scout, Logan Creech, with his Scout Master, Frank Deal.
Logan Creech’s Project

When A Place of Hope returned from the trip to Cameroon in November 2007, young Logan Creech heard about their mission and was inspired to act. Working towards his Eagle Scout designation, Logan took on the challenge of collecting personal and school supplies for 150 HIV/AIDS orphans. In March 2008, Logan collected pens, pencils, rulers, sharpeners, erasers, toothbrushes and toothpaste, socks, underwear and pajamas. He then packed the donations in individual bags.