Honey for the hopeless

7/10/2012 10:49:00 AM sendtheroths 0 Comments

We met a widow, who was late into her 50’s while we were in the internally displaced people (IDP) camp. Her husband was murdered when soldiers raided her village at night. She was gang-raped by soldiers and left with HIV as a result.

Her five children, who are now all completely grown, live in various cities around eastern Congo. Three of them have university education but are still unable to find work. She lives alone in a tent in the IDP camp which has a small medical clinic, but no supplies for it constituents.

She told us that she was angry with God for two years. She always thought that in her late years, she would be provided for and blessed. But instead, she is widowed, diseased, homeless. Her children are jobless and unable to take care of themselves and much less her.

We prayed for her and gave as much encouragement as possible. She told us that she met a local minister in the city of Goma who reminded her that God still had a plan. We were another agent of God to remind her that He was still in control.

When we held a small seminar for young women in the IDP camp a day ago, that mama came. I immediately knew that she was there to ask for money, since this seminar was for unmarried girls and she was clearly passed that point in her life.

To my surprise, she didn’t ask me for money. She asked me for honey.

She told me that she met someone who could supply the medicine to help combat her HIV, but that they would not allow her to have it, without coating it in honey.

The cost of honey has skyrocketed, since the villages where the beehives are kept are under siege. This leaves honey that is imported from Rwanda as the only option for purchase.

Five dollars.

Mama asked me to by for her two jars of honey. Ten dollars.

This sounds like a small amount, but we get requests like this from people who are just as desperate everyday.

Ten dollars.

Ten dollars.

Ten dollars.

It adds up.
If you’re asking the question… why honey? Please visit www.hopepositiveafrica.com, which is our friend’s site who works with HIV+ people in East Africa. He explains the problems that occur when people take HIV medication without  a balanced diet or at least having something to coat the stomach.

“It’s like someone trying to digest a razor blade,” he told us.

Hope+ Africa has sponsored this mama, so that she can have honey. We purchased the honey and brought it to her tent to ensure that the money was used adequately. This is the greatness of partnership. If we are building God's Kingdom, we should all be partners-- not competitors.