Most Urgent Needs

Five Kids—Five Reasons to Hope

Marycruz. Meshach. Ben. Hertzley. Mukisa.

They’re just names to you now, but over the next two months you’ll get to know them one by one. Five stories, five countries. You’ll get a glimpse into what it’s like growing up in a developing nation, the challenges they face and the goals they reach for. Ranging in age from an infant to a young adult, these five aren’t just part of a statistic—just 5 out of the 387 million children around the world living in poverty—they’re real people with likes and dislikes, and hopes and dreams.

Hertzley’s favorite color is red, he’s learning to play the recorder, and he wants to be a pastor when he grows up. Ben, a double orphan in Kenya, used to walk about three miles each way to school and was on a path that could’ve led to a very different life.

Scattered across the globe, these five youths have dramatically different backgrounds and life stories, but they all have something in common: they have experienced the love of Christ in tangible ways.

In the coming weeks, we will share these stories with you, one at a time. Read what they have to say, get to know them, look at the pictures, watch the video, and be inspired—you, by partnering with Bright Hope—are creating brighter futures for each of them…and thousands more just like them.

Meet Our Five Kids:

Bolivia: Marycruz

This little Bolivian girl’s father died two years ago, and she and her mother and little brother Joel are fighting to survive. Her father worked in the mines, but contracted a lung disease and was sick for years. Near the end of his life, he weighed only about 100 pounds. And even before that, he’d spent time in jail for driving without a license and accidentally hitting an elderly man…who ended up dying.

Read her story

Kenya: Ben-Johnson

When Ben’s mother passed away when he was 15, he found himself without a home and wondered if he’d ever get to fulfill his dream of graduating. Then he found a place at a Bright Hope-sponsored school, and everything changed.

Read his story

Zambia: Meshach

Living on an island in Zambia, six-year-old Meshach’s parents had to drop out of school by grade three. However, they’re laying a different foundation for their son’s future: Meshach is the first person in his family to attend preschool! And it’s not just any preschool, but one that his parents helped Bright Hope build by hauling water, sand and bricks by hand.

Read his story

Haiti: Hertzley

While many youth in the community of Ferrier have stopped attending church or see no future for themselves in Haiti and emigrate, 11-year-old Hertzley is active in his church and has a passion for music and seeing people come to salvation. Affectionately called a “church baby,” our partner church plays a profound role in his life.

Read his story

Uganda: Mukisa

Baby Mukisa was born after his mother, Esther, had been in labor for a week and needed to deliver him via emergency C-section. Because hospitals in Uganda are often understocked, many mothers get turned away for not having the required hygienic tools needed for delivery. Thankfully, Esther had a Mama Kit given to her by Bright Hope and was able to safely bring Mukisa into the world.

Read his story


No matter where in the world you come from or what your story is, this holiday season you have the power to change the next chapter of children’s lives.

Right now, you can give a gift that will bring Hope for Today, Tomorrow and Eternity to children like Marycruz, Hertzley, Meshach, Ben, and baby Mukisa.

22,000 children are dying every single day due to poverty. But you can change that statistic. Give children an opportunity to thrive, a reason to Hope, and a chance to dream…and see those dreams come true.

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Pregnant moms need mama kits for safety and health of newborn babies

Women in the remote villages, where our partner churches are located, have been making us aware of the struggles they face when it’s time to give birth. They say things like:

  • The hospital staff will turn me away unless I bring my own supplies, like surgical gloves.
  • Giving birth at home is scary and I have no clean towels or materials.
  • The hospital is 30 miles away, I have no time to walk there, and taking a bicycle is hard on me when I am going into labor.
  • I have no clothes or extra blankets for the baby.

No wonder the statistics about childbirth in developing countries are so bleak. Did you know 99% of all maternal deaths occur in developing countries?

To learn more about the risks and challenges—and how preventable many of them are—You can download our infographic on being Poor and Pregnant here.

The churches we partner with in these villages wanted a solution to help these mothers safely give birth and increase the health of mother and child. So together we came up with two kits, one for the mother and one for the newborn child.

The Mama Kit for the birthing process includes items like surgical gloves for the midwife, a clean razor blade for cutting the umbilical cord, gauze and more. There is also a new baby kit, with blankets and clothes. Both kits are needed. They cost $25 each.

Will you help us by providing as many kits as you are able?

We could use 500 Mama Kits over the coming few months, but every single one is a blessing to the mother who does not have to give birth without it. (Hey, are you willing to take a few seconds to help spread the word by sharing our Facebook page? I would be so grateful.)

Aminah is a woman expecting to give birth in December. Her first three children were born at the main hospital, but those experiences were not good. In Uganda, if a woman doesn’t bring her own medical supplies to the hospital for the delivery, the nurses may send her home or refuse to help her.

After three babies, though, there was yet another factor that made Aminah reconsider where she would give birth to future children: Aminah had to travel the long distance from her village to the hospital, on the back of a bicycle, while in labor. 

Can you even imagine?

Aminah ultimately decided to give birth to her fourth child at home. But giving birth at home has its own risks. A dirt floor, finding and paying a trained midwife to help with the birth, risk of infection, and always wondering, “What if something goes wrong?”

Pray for Aminah and others like her in Africa and around the world. And if led to help, please give all you are able.

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