Mbiyambiya’s story

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September 20, 2017
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September 22, 2017

Mbiyambiya’s story

Mbiyambiya is 14 years old and is doing grade 8. He stays with his grand father, and the wife who are both aged, in Meheba refugee camp. Mbiyambiya does not know any history about his father, and his mother is married to someone else and stays far away from Meheba. His grand parents are too old to take care of him and this has made life so difficult for this young boy who survives on only one meal per day and usually of very poor diet.

Mbiyambiya loves school very much, but most of his time he misses lessons as he go in the bush to hunt for mice and locusts for food, and also wild fruits. During interview, Mbiyambiya lamented on his old and faint blanket which cannot give him enough warmth at night. He also said he feels out of place when he is in school without uniforms, as the majority have uniforms. His old shoes which were bought 2 years ago are now too small and hurts him when he puts them on.

At this tender age, Mbiyambiya has learnt how to burn charcoal as he does this as the way to raise little money for school requirements among other needs. This consumes most of his school time. Asked on why his mother cannot support him, Mbiyambiya said his mother stays far from him and the step father is not helping in any way as he struggles to care of his own 6 children.

Mbiyambiya was born in Meheba refugee camp after his mother fled war from DRC and has lived the rest of his life in exile. Life is very hard in this refugee camp as most refugees live by farming, but most of the land in this settlement is unfertile and needs fertilizer which is very expensive in Zambia so not affordable by most refugees. UNHCR, the United Nations refugee agency only support new refugees with food for only one year and afterwards, every refugee has to provide everything for himself including food and school fees. Mbiyambiya lives in the same scenario, he has to be self dependent as young as he is (14 years).

Mbiyambiya, who is so handsome, always admire other kids as they put on new clothes and shoes but to his side it is rare for him to have new clothes.

HE SAYS EVEN THOUGH LIFE IS SO HARD FOR HIM NOW, HE STILL HAVE HOPE OF A BETTER FUTURE, HE WANTS TO BECOME A TRUCK DRIVER WHEN HE FINISH SCHOOL.

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