She is 15 years old and has a dream. She dreams of continuing her education so that she can, one day, provide for her 3 younger siblings and her grandma. She dreams of one day moving to the big city of Bulawayo so she can attend the university there and become a doctor. She dreams of getting married one day and of becoming a mom.
Not so long ago, Fatima dreamed of eating enough food and not going to bed hungry.
While not all her dreams have come true yet, by all signs we see, Fatima will be able to accomplish some of the goals she’s laid out before her in the very near future. As the proud owner of a herd of goats which she’s taken care of thoughout the last year, she is well on her way of accomplishing her dream of eating well – she couldn’t believe how good milk is when she first tried it! With the veggie garden her family is growing, thanks to the seeds we sent them. Fatima and her siblings and grandma have added kale, beans, spinach, tomatoes, carrots, and onions to their diet, as well. This makes her happy, as she no longer goes to bed hungry and she doesn’t hear her siblings complaining of stomachs that are painful in their emptyness.
She is learning how to save seeds for next year’s garden and knows that as long as she is careful, they won’t lack for vegetables again. With training in conservation farming behind her, she is a wiz at mulching and fertilizing her small garden, showing me how it is done. I am so proud of her. I am so proud of these kids who, against all odds, are moving ahead, providing for themselves and getting out of the cycle of poverty.
While visiting her last week, I asked to see her goats and she showed them to me with a small smile of satisfaction on her lips. I did the happy dance which is translatable in any language without the need for words. We danced together and together, we continue to dream big for Fatima and her loved ones.