Charmaine's Story

Charmaine grew up without a mother. The eighth of nine siblings, Charmaine recalls being left in the care of her ten-year-old brother at age five. Her father’s work required him to be away, the only way he knew to keep his children fed. When he could, he would visit his children and bring them a sack of rice to get them by until his next visit.

The way to school was difficult and steep. Charmaine didn’t mind the hour-long walk, though, because she enjoyed learning to read and write. She also didn’t eat any lunch at school, knowing she and her siblings would need to share the rice they had in the evenings and mornings.

Against all odds, Charmaine graduated high school with honors at 16 years old.

Not knowing how to find a job in a difficult market, and having no examples to follow, she didn’t know where to go from there.

* * *

Less than two years later, she found herself raising a child alone.

Her social worker referred her to 10ThousandWindows. She took to heart the things she learned during her training and saw herself change in the process. She said that before the training, she was just focused on herself and did not care for anyone else. She believes the training helped her grow as a person, and she is now more willing to open up her life to others.

On a referral by 10ThousandWindows, she was hired as a Junior Data Analyst. She was recently given an award for excellent performance at work. She has learned how to manage the stresses of her assignments and loves the work environment.

Her daughter is going to start school soon and Charmaine is excited to see her in uniform. Charmaine wants her daughter to be excited to go to school like she was when she was a child, but without having to endure all the hardships she experienced.

Charmaine believes that God guided her in every situation. She acknowledges God’s provision of her every need, including the people who truly cared for her.

“I never expected that this is going to happen to me. If not because of the 10ThousandWindows, I will still be in a dark place.”

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