Yesterday I met Jessica. A few months ago, this little girl lived in a small house which had been a toilet. Living conditions were basic to say the least.
Jessica's family is known as a 'child-headed household' where parents have died or left and only the children remain. The child heading this particualar household is Jessica's mother, now twenty-one and the eldest of four siblings. Her brother, William (in the photograph with Jessica) is in his final year at primary school. Paul, slightly older than William is fortunate and has sponsors which allow him to attend boarding school.
Loanhead Parish Church provided funds to pay the rent on another house for the family and to allow Jessica to go to nursery school. Scripture Union, where I am being accommodated at the moment are able to give Jessica's mother occasional work cleaning sheets from the guest rooms but this is limited.
I learned from William that he and his sister only eat every other day. Even as he tells me this he smiles and is clear about all the good vitamines they get. Their diet consists of rice and vegetables. Jessica is more fortunate. One of the reasons for sending her to school, aside from starting her education, is that the nursery children are fed there each day.