This post is written by a guest storyteller, Amanda Limon. She stayed with Sole Hope for the past six weeks during her one year trip around the world. She traveled with the Sole Hope team on our recent journey to Kisoro
Ruth was doing the best that she could to raise her children, all the while being beaten by her husband. He’d come home, drunk and angry, releasing his anger with a raw brutality that left Ruth physically blind. She asked and asked, then waited and waited and to hear back from someone, anyone who would be willing to help.
Two years ago she reached out to the district. Things had gone from bad to worse when she and her beloved children were infested with jiggers. Her oldest three had very extreme cases and were sent home from school and not allowed to return until their “problem” was fixed. A district representative was finally sent to meet her and her family. Ruth explained that her family was not the only family suffering the paralyzing affects of this jigger outbreak; their entire community was silently suffering.
The district representative headed back with a heavy heart and knew that she had to help. Within the next couple of weeks she came back and took Ruth’s three older children to the hospital where they were treated. As they were on the mend, she sought out the best boarding school in town and paid for their school fees to attend. She then started searching for a solution that would benefit the community as a whole…
It took nearly a year for word to travel from this distant corner of Uganda, swathed in forest and pressed up against the Congo border. As soon as we heard, our team talked, making a plan, and headed out that very week. One drive through the night, a few close calls, and lot of prayer later, and we reached Kisoro.
When Ruth showed up, the whole community made space for her and the two children who were with her. You could feel the burden that she carried for her community released as her children’s feet were being washed. Ruth’s courage and her persistence in the face of abuse and a stigmatized medical condition resulted in a community educated, empowered, and equipped to remain jigger free.
Ruth is living proof. Proof that, even in the most desperate of situations, hope can transform a community.
We are humbled that we were the ones who were able to respond to her cry for help. We are thankful for a team willing to travel, go beyond tribe, and translate hope and healing to a people who were desperate for it.
*Ruth’s name has been changed to protect her privacy