Go to the end of the path until you get to the gate. Go through the gate and head straight out towards the horizon. Keep going towards the horizon. Sit down and have a rest every now and again, but keep on going. Just keep on with it. Keep on going as far as you can. That's how you get there. Michael Leunig
Janine Roberts is courageous, giving and inspirational. Her email updates tell of her struggles and triumphs living in Zimbabwe. She is Tim’s cousin and has been helping Zimbabweans get their basic needs met for almost ten years.
Her most recent Project Hope newsletter was a plea to help with nutrition and medical costs for children in the Fairfield Children’s Home where she lives and works. Although hopeful, I could read between the lines and “hear” Janine’s struggles.
Two years ago, Janine met one-year-old twins, Abigal and Grace in an orphanage. Their mother died during childbirth and the father took them to the social welfare office when they were only five days old. He said he was too old to care for them. Janine was told by the social worker that they were severely malnourished causing them to be suffering developmentally.
One week later, the father consented to have Janine adopt them. The following Friday she took the girls home and she began adoption proceedings.
The authorities removed the girls from her home 10 months ago because of missing paperwork. The current law says that Zimbabwean children can only be adopted by Zimbabwean citizens or permanent residents. In the years she has been there Janine has only been able to get a temporary visa permit.
The Fairfield Children’s Home where Janine works, is housing the children. Although she spends time with them everyday, she must say goodbye to them during the evening. Janine is hoping that her visa gets renewed in January. If not, she hopes to work in nearby South Africa so that she can visit the girls often. She said, “Although we do not have a paper to legally make us a family, Abigal and Grace are my daughters and I will always support them in every way I can.”
Today’s gift was to give money to support Janine in her work. I can’t even imagine the hardships that she faces everyday. Hopefully, the path will lead to the open gate that will allow her to formally adopt the beautiful and loving twin girls.