Monday, October 28, 2013

A Changed Life

The room's dark.  Two old, wooden chairs are all the furniture in the tiny house.  At night, one chair is shoved against the door to keep the drunk, dangerous alley men out.  They take turns sleeping in the other one.

Their life is rough.  Her mom works hard, but she doesn't get much in return.  Young Julian hears her relatives' negative comments.  Maybe life will never be good for her, but she can help her family.
They say she's sitting on a gold mine.  She has us, her daughters.  Soon, I will tell my mom to sell me in marriage.  At least then my sisters can go to school.  They will have a good life.
Her mom takes her to a Compassion project.  A friend told her that they would help her.  Julian doesn't believe it though - someone would help her for nothing?  Her mom and her check it out to find out what the catch is.  Nothing can be found, so she is enrolled.  Soon, to her surprise, she gets a sponsor.  An even bigger surprise comes a little bit later.
My sponsors sent me a birthday card!  No one in Uganda sends cards.  They say that cards take too much time and money.  I carried that card everywhere with me for weeks.  I felt so special.
Julian is succeeding at school and goes to a boarding school for more education.  She is thankful that there is a Compassion project near her.  Even though she is far from her home and family, there is a project with people who love her.

Then it is the beginning of the 4th semester, and Julian is at the top of her class.  Yet, the school master yells at her.  He tells her that until she pays for all four semesters in full, she must leave.  She goes back home.  She forgot how scary it was to live in the alley.  She still goes to school, but now she feels no hope.  She can't pay for boarding school, so she decides to make a sacrifice for her family.
I'll be worth less, now that I am 14.  It'll still be enough for my mom and sisters to have a good life.  I will tell my mom to sell me in marriage soon.
Before she tells her mom, Compassion comes to her home.  They say that they will pay for her school in full!  She studies hard and graduates.  Through her hard work, she was accepted into the Leadership Development Program with Compassion.  Before she leaves for university, she makes enough money to buy her mom a new home where it is safe.
I attended Makerere University in Uganda and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Development Studies. I just graduated from Baylor University with a Masters’ in Social Work! My goal is to use my social work career to advocate for children and women living with HIV/AIDS and to help those in vulnerable situations realize their dreams and potential. *


Julian Alum
That is the story of Julian Alum, a former Compassion sponsor child.  I walked through her story at the Compassion Mobile Experience, and this is written from my memory of that.  I just missed meeting her, as she joined the tour the stop after mine.  You can read more about her here -  Meet Julian Alum — a Former Sponsored Child From Uganda | Change The Story

To see where the Compassion Mobile Experience is headed, visit Compassion: Change the Story - Events

*quote taken from Meet Julian Alum — a Former Sponsored Child From Uganda | Change The Story


  1. That is such an awesome story, Lizzie! Thanks for sharing.

  2. Beautiful story! Thanks for sharing, Lizzie.

  3. That's beautiful, Lizzie! Thanks for sharing :)

  4. It sounds like Compassion Mobile is an awesome experience!

    1. Yes, the Compassion Mobile is incredible! I really hope it goes near you soon! :)

  5. What an encouraging story!! Thanks for sharing it here!! I hope that someday I'll be able to attend the Compassion Mobile Experience!!

    1. I hope that you will be able to go to the Compassion Mobile too! All the stories are so encouraging and full of hope - it's awesome! :)

  6. Wow!
    Encouraging stories like this is what drew me to sponsor. There need to be many more beautiful outcomes. :)

    1. I agree - stories of compassion graduates are so inspiring! Thank you for changing more kids lives in the name of Jesus! Glad you stopped by too, Jerry :)