An accident when she was just seven condemned Lorette to a lonely childhood in a series of Rwandan orphanages. The last of these was the Gahanga institution for children with disabilities in Kigali, which Hope and Homes for Children is now working to close. Lorette spent 12 years surviving in appalling conditions there, but today she is free. With our support Lorette is now studying at University and building an independent life for herself. This is her story.
We’re inspired by the courage and resilience of the children we work for. Read their stories here:
- Lorette’s Story
- Dima’s StoryDima is an outgoing 14-year-old who takes an interest in the world around him. For most of his childhood though, no one took any interest in him.
- Escaping slavery to stay together – Katya and Masha’s storyLiving on the streets with a baby to care for, Katya desperately sought help. The ‘help’ turned out to be a slavery operation that kept her daughter imprisoned and sent her back onto the streets to beg.
- Rukhiya: My StoryRukhiya Budden is the first to say that today, she leads a very privileged life. She lives in a lovely home in Buckinghamshire with her husband and their three beautiful daughters. But her own childhood could not have been more different.
- Joseph’s StoryJoseph was born with cerebral palsy and abandoned as a baby. He was taken to an orphanage and spent most of the first nine years of his life, lying in a cot or on the floor, unable to move.
- Uwera’s StoryImagine being fed just once a day, sleeping on a floor crawling with insects and only having your nappy changed every 3 days. This was Uwera's life in an orphanage.
- Chloe’s StoryChloe is a tiny little girl who looks as if she might be about two or three years old. In reality though, her true age is probably closer to ten.
- Alex’s storyAlex spent the first 15 years of his life living in fear. He never once knew what it meant to feel safe, let alone loved.
- Nothing Compares to Family Life: Sylvia’s StoryAs she cleared up the dishes, Rhinah heard a noise from the back yard. Peering out into the semi-darkness from the kitchen window, she could just make out a small bundle, lying on the ground at the edge of her property. She heard another cry and ran outside to investigate. When she unwrapped the bundle she discovered a tiny baby girl; Sylvia, then just a few days old.
- Edin’s storyWithout our support, Edin's family were in danger of losing their children to an orphanage. Against the odds, they are now able to provide a real home for their children; a home where Edin can grow up feeling loved and knowing that he belongs.
- Cary’s StoryCary was only seven when her mother left her in a remote orphanage for children with disabilities in Rwanda because she could no longer cope without support.
- Hope for Viorel and his family this ChristmasNo one wants to have their photo taken when they’re at rock bottom. And sadly, this Christmas in Romania, Viorel and his family are in a desperate situation.
- Baby in the bushesGihozo is four years old and is the apple of her family’s eye, but as a small baby the authorities insisted she was given up to an orphanage. Her story explains why.
- Fiona and Patience: how poverty pushes children into orphanagesFiona is a loving mother who is struggling against enormous odds to keep her daughter, Patience, from life in an orphanage.
- Giselle’s storyGiselle was born with multiple disabilities and spent the first five years of her life ignored and neglected in a crowded orphanage in Rwanda.
- “Without help, I would not have been able to keep my son.” Ivo’s storyWhen Ivo was born, his family had nowhere permanent to live and no income. Without help, his mother, Tatyana, thought she might have to leave her son in an orphanage.
- “He will make you smile more than he will make you cry:” Georgi’s storyPetya and Ivan Petrovi had spent years longing for a second child. But when their son, Georgi, was born in October 2012, the midwives and doctors at the hospital behaved as if something terrible had happened.
- A new future: Shima’s storyShima was born with multiple disabilities and abandoned as a baby. He spent the first years of his life alone in a cot in a loveless orphanage.
- She is my life: Azra and Alma’s storyAzra Čaušević is a happy, high-spirited little girl who lives with her mother, Alma, in a village in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
- Growing up together: Gloria’s storyWithout the support of Hope and Homes for Children though, it’s very likely that Gloria and her sisters would now be living in an orphanage, separated from each other and from their mother, Rada.
- Home at last for Christmas: Maxim’s StoryMaxim is 16 years old and has spent most of his life trapped in Ukraine’s vast and loveless network of children’s institutions.