Not all children get to enjoy Christmas holidays with their families like it is custom everywhere. In fact, there are many children who dread this time of year because this is the time when they are mostly reminded that they have no one to call family or a place to call home. According to SOS Children’s home Fundraising Manager, Agnes Malanda, this is especially sad for orphans and vulnerable children who do not have any relatives, as some were abandoned at birth and thus have no family connections, while others cannot visit their relatives for safety reasons. She said while they appreciate funds and food donations from companies as well as individuals, it would mean a great deal to the children if more people could open their doors to them on Christmas so they too can experience the holiday on a family setting.
“I would like to appeal to Batswana to share their home with some of the children from SOS who do not have anywhere to go on Christmas. We have a program where individuals can take one child or a few to celebrate Christmas holidays with them. During holidays, some of the children that live here get to leave and spend some time with their relatives; this leaves more than half of them at SOS, who don’t have anywhere else to go. Seeing other children leave for the holidays gets very stressful and emotional for those who have to stay behind, so getting invited to celebrate Christmas with other families would make all the difference they would need at that time, this is why we are pleading with Batswana to open their home just for this one day so the other children may also enjoy Christmas like the rest of the world,” she said.
Malanda also encouraged individuals to donate whatever they have to the children’s home no matter how small.
SOS is a worldwide Organization that gives orphans and other vulnerable children a place to call home away from home. It has three centers in Botswana; Tlokweng with 182 children, Serowe with 109 children while Francistown has 169 children.