When Mercy was four years old, her mother and father separated and she stayed to live with her mother and her younger brother Reuben who was one at the time. After a few years her mother passed away. Mercy and her brother were sent to live with their father who was an alcoholic. Every day Mercy was left to care for her toddler brother while her father went out looking for work and his next drink.
Many times Mercy’s father would bring the children to Fred and Alice at Hands with Hope and try to give his children to them to be cared for, but always Fred and Alice would ask the father to please stop drinking and take responsibility for his children.
One night in mid 2007, when Mercy was 10 and Reuban 6, their father did not come back home for the night. Mercy asked Reuben to go with her into the slum to help her search for their father. As they were moving around the slum they came upon a group of people standing and staring. Mercy said to her brother, “come here, let’s get closer and see what they are staring at”. As they approached the crowd they found their father laying down holding a paper bag in his hand. When Mercy saw her father she called to him “wake up! wake up!” but she was told by the crowd that her father was dead.
Mercy took off running from there to find her grandmother. After their father’s burial Mercy and Reuban moved to stay with their grandmother but she was also not able to provide care for both children. Mercy, being the oldest, was taken in by Fred and Alice and welcomed into Hands with Hope Orphanage. Within the same year it was discovered that Reuban was in fact not able to stay with his grandmother and had been living alone on the streets for some months, so he was also invited to join his sister at Hands with Hope.
Mercy and Rueban have found sanctuary at Hands with Hope since 2007. Sanctuary from the hardship they have suffered with the loss of both parents. It is because of the heartache, suffering, and resiliency of Mercy, and others like her, that we are passionate about raising funding for Hands with Hope. We have a passion for improving her living conditions, and a passion to provide similar asylum for other young girls and boys who are seeking desperately for their own place of refuge.
Read Rodger’s Story, a story of survival on the streets of the slums of Nairobi.