HomeLocal NewsEx-street kid sets up orphanage

Ex-street kid sets up orphanage

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MASVINGO — Disowned by his father at a tender age for watching a Christian film screened by a group of Baptist Church missionaries in the late 1990s, Nhamo Chigohi, later found himself a new home along the dingy streets of Masvingo as a street kid.

Tatenda Chitagu
own correspondent

Before long, a Good Samaritan — Baptist Church missionary John Griggs — came to his rescue and adopted him. This proved to be Chigohi’s turning point as he later trained and became a pastor with the same church.

Despite, his changed fortunes, Chigohi still retraced his background and reached out to fellow street kids, orphans and underprivileged and in 2004 founded a descent home for them named Masogome Baptist Orphanage.

“I know how it feels to grow up in the streets and I feel for these kids. That is why I started the orphanage and extended the begging bowl to the church to cater for the orphans and other street kids.

My life in the streets prepared me for such humanitarian work,” Chigohi said.

He said he started off with eight kids and currently caters for 120 children that he also pays for their school fees with the help of the church and other donors at a cost of around $30 000 per year.

The church, which has 10 branches in the district, is also running two schools in Mwenezi district.

Chigohi said the strategy was to empower the kids before weaning them off the orphanage.

“Without empowerment, they would soon go back to the streets, so we decided to give them empowerment in the form of education and other vocational training skills,” he said.

He said some of the children ended up in universities.

“We have several success stories of professionals who passed through this orphanage. Some also have life skills and are into SMEs,” Chigohi said.

One of the beneficiaries, Honest Bonda, who is now a police officer, said he was grateful for the hand-holding he got from the pastor.

“I am one of the beneficiaries of the charity work and I grew up at the orphanage and he paid all my fees and catered for my needs up until I got a job. Now, people may not know how I grew up and got to be what I am,” Bonda said.

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