Ugandan orphan determined to cure AIDS

Many people are crushed by adversity, but some harness it to fuel their dreams.

“I will be a medical doctor,” says Joel who, at age 10, grieved the deaths of both his parents. “I wish to establish this drug that will cure AIDS. It has taken many people, including some of my relatives.”

When Food for the Hungry found Joel, he was eager to go to school but had no books, pens or other materials a student needs. Upon being admitted to FH's Child Sponsorship program (funded partially by Poverty 180), Joel began school and continued on for nine years.

“Since FH came and sponsored me,” he says, “I finished my primary level, high school, and currently [am] doing my ‘A' levels [exams required to enter the university]. If they had not come by then, I wouldn't be here speaking with you. I think really that it's something that just came from God himself, because when I look back, I see I am blessed.”

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Throughout school, Joel has focused on the sciences: biology, chemistry and agriculture. “I just feel that I have a bright future after my studies,” he says.

Along the way, Joel was helped by FH staff member Moses Mwalye. “Moses has been my inspiration and mentor up to  now,” Joel says. “Encouraged me to be at school, read the Bible daily, pray; he has been my mentor. His life is an encouragement.”

We pray that Joel will go on to the university and achieve his dream of becoming a doctor. FH left Joel's community in 2010 after years of partnership that resulted in a healthier environment for children and their families. Watch some of the closing celebrations here!

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