A couple of weeks ago, our volunteer nurse, Rita shared a story with me that had really touched her heart, and mine too. She was out on the mobile tuktuk in one of the slums where we do free medical care and was handing out apples.
A little 9 year old girl approached her and asked for another apple to give to her mother. Rita said no, if her mum wanted an apple she would have to come and get one, she can't hand out extra apples to everyone! The little girl insisted, and said her mum had only just gotten home from work and was cooking dinner, and couldn't come. Rita held her ground, and the little girl raced off to bring her mother. By the time she had gotten back to the tuktuk, Rita was cleaning ulcers on the heads of a couple of boys (skin infections are common in the slums) with Betadine. The little girl approached Rita again and boldly asked for a bottle of Betadine, to take home because her little brother had similar ulcers! Rita said no again, but agreed to go and see the little brother. Visiting the shack, Rita found the 2 year old brother lying on a bed, unable to walk or talk, the aftermath of meningitis. He suffers from fits and thrashes around, often hurting himself. Rita tended to his infections, and the little girl continued to share her concerns... Her father is a snail seller, he came home that night exhausted from the 40+ temps and went straight to bed and would not wake up. Rita's heart dropped straight into her belly. She quickly checked on the dad. He was alive, but suffering from heat exhaustion.
In telling the story, Rita repeated again and again, this little girl had something special, an energy and enthusiasm and simple gutsy get-up-and-go which is rare. Flame is about identifying leaders, (like Rita herself who is now serving in the slums!) and giving them the leg up they need to grow beyond their potential. We would love for girls like this to be in school- the first step towards a world-changing future.