After losing our parents, my two siblings and I came to live at Dream Children’s Home. The year was 2009. It was a very emotional time for all of us. The loss of our parents was still fresh. At the home, we met so many new faces. Although there were not as many children at the home as there are now, the number felt huge especially since we had to squeeze in one house together with the directors of the home, who everyone else called “Mum and Dad.”
Adapting to this new life was quite a challenge. I cried my eyes out the first few weeks. I felt that my siblings and I had been abandoned by my relatives, who I thought would take us in after our parents’ deaths. It also wasn’t easy to refer to the directors as “Mum and Dad” as it reminded me so much of my own parents that tears would well up in my eyes every time I tried to utter those words. However, after experiencing nothing but love and care from them, calling them “Mum and Dad” comes naturally now.
I have also adapted to life at a children’s home and I now consider the other children that we live with to be my siblings. At Dream, we are one huge family.
Be that as it may be, the holidays, especially Christmas and New Year’s, have an emotional toll on me. Some of the children at the home would be taken home by their biological family for the holidays. A few of us would remain, a stark reminder that we had nowhere else to go. Often times, I would find my mind drifting as I wondered how life would have turned out if my parents were still alive. I would also question God on what wrong I had done that he punished me by taking away my parents.
Luckily, we always have visitors during Christmas who come bearing gifts and good tidings. Their presence would light up the home and make the situation happier. Things at the home have also changed and the expansion of facilities meant that the home could take in more children like me. So, during Christmas, there are quite a few kids running around to liven things up. We have also seen a surge in the number of visitors over the years. You know what they say: “The more the merrier!”
To make the season more meaningful, Mum and Dad usually take us to parks where we get to have lots of fun and even go swimming. The icing on the cake is opening gifts on Boxing Day, which is the day after Christmas Day.
We anticipate that this year’s Christmas will be different due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For starters, since the onset of the outbreak, visitors were restricted to enter the home. There is also a high likelihood that we won’t go out on Christmas Day. However, we can still have the Boxing Day fun as we are accepting gifts from well-wishers. We are also beyond grateful to get to be together and healthy this holiday season.
They say a friend in need is a friend indeed, and Moja Tu has proven to be that friend to all of us here at Dream Children’s Home. During the COVID-19 season, we have received ongoing food donation as well as other essentials including hand sanitizers from Moja Tu to keep everyone safe, healthy and cared for. Even with the rampant uncertainty during this difficult time, it has made all the difference to know that Moja Tu and its supporters have had our backs. On behalf of everyone at Dream Children’s Home, I would like to say thank you to everyone who has donated to Moja Tu’s COVID-19 relief efforts. You don’t know what your support means to us!