My name is Samuel Vonumu, I come from a very poor family in India--from the city of Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. My father passed away while I was 6 months old. Because of financial problems, my mother-- a single parent-- had a very difficult time raising me and my sister. She received no help from the family and had to work as a maid servant. She worked at three jobs totaling 16 hours a day. Yet, the money that she earned was not enough. She struggled hard to put me through school and had to request the school authorities (Seventh-day Adventist High School) to help her pay part of my school fees.
At the time, the school had a program called CCF (Christian Children Fund) and I was enrolled into it. I had a sponsor from America who began helping me when I was about 5 and helped me for more than 12 years. She paid for my school fees, uniforms, books and more. She also helped my mother. She helped us all-- those whom she had never met. I would never forget her. Her generosity and compassion made a big difference in our lives for which I will always be grateful to her.
After I came to America, I tried various sources to contact her. The CCF could not provide me with any details. I only know that her name was Mrs. H. George. All I wanted to do is to hold my sponsor, hug her, and thank her for all that she had done for me. I also wanted to offer her-- even in a small way-- something as a token of my gratitude. Unfortunately, I have not yet been able to locate her. I hope someday I will meet this wonderful person. I pray for this every day.
Nonetheless now, she is my inspiration and it is because of her that I have decided to help other poor and needy children. My wife, Rena, fully supports me in this effort. I am a living testimonial that help from a selfless and kind-hearted person can help build a Child's life in spite of difficult circumstances. My sponsor's generosity made a big difference in my life. Now, it is my turn. Thirty years later, I have become a sponsor along with my wife and am privileged to support nearly 70 poor and needy children.