Treasures among the trash

Sixteen-year-old Christopher’s village doesn’t just border the city dump – it has become an extension of it.

Cross International
Cross International is providing an education for Christopher, 16, so he can work his way out of poverty.

While many poor Zambian families grow small gardens in their yards, Christopher’s neighbors fill theirs with garbage, which they dig through for expired food and recyclable goods. The smell attracts flies that seem to be better-fed than the children playing barefoot amid the filth, their tattered clothes caked with dirt. Instead of getting an education, they stay home and help their parents scavenge through the trash, because at school they will be hungry, but there’s food to find at the dump site. This is the only life they know, and the only life they even know to hope for.

The same used to be true for Christopher, whose widowed, unemployed mother has no money to pay for school fees for him or his three siblings. But with help from a local Christian ministry supported by Cross International, Christopher is setting a higher standard for the children in his village by going to school, studying hard, and dreaming big. He is now in 7th grade, his best subjects are math and science, and he says that when he graduates, he wants to become a judge! Two of Christopher’s siblings are also now in school, and the hope is that their example will motivate the neighbors to begin to break the cycle of poverty.

In addition to school fees, the sponsored children receive health care, monthly food rations, and home visits from the ministry. This holistic approach addresses the many aspects of poverty: physical, economic, psychological, and also spiritual. Click here to learn more about this life-changing project that is bringing Christ’s love to the poorest of the poor.


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