Lovemore Jimu (17) is a double orphan whose parents died from AIDS related illnesses. Currently, he is doing Form 3 at Tafara 1 High in Harare. His mother died in 2008 and his father re-married another and died in 2014. His father died shortly after Lovemore was enrolled at Mavambo Learning Centre, an accelerated literacy and numeracy program for children who have never been to school so that they will be integrated into formal schools to catch up with their peers. Lovemore’s step mother started to abuse him but Mavambo Orphan Care (MOC) and community volunteers continued to support him till after the step mother remarried and he moved in with one of his half-brothers who unfortunately died in March 2020.
Lovemore has been staying by himself at the family home but another older half-brother has been fighting with the step mother for ownership of the home. Neighbours and community volunteers have been supporting the child and providing food. He has been receiving food support from the Catholic Church desk in Caledonia and sleeping at a neighbour’s house. He recently woke up to find the family home burnt to ashes with all his stuff inside. Police investigations are still ongoing, but MOC with the assistance from Department of Social Development (DSD) temporarily placed him into foster care and he has been united with another half-brother living in Mabvuku.
Lovemore holds MOC in high esteem as the organisation plays an important role in his life by providing for his needs especially furthering his right to education.
“Mavambo used to give me food when I was staying alone, they also gave me shelter and until now, they continue to support my educational needs including provision of books, school uniform and sees to my healthcare,” Lovemore said.
MOC also equipped him with the knowledge about children’s rights through Psycho-Social Support workshops which he said help children in his situation to evaluate and share their experiences.
Lovemore, who wishes to be a mechanic is very grateful that MOC brought light into his once devastated life. He encouraged parents to bring up their children in a positive way that promotes love and unit, and thanked MOC for caring for children from difficult backgrounds.