Read Amlaku’s story.
Words by Ric Foxley.
Amlaku is the youngest of 4 children. His mother died when he was an infant, and he was raised by his sister, Ayal, who was 7 when their mother died. Inspired by another boy in the village he ran away, up to the town of Lalibela, some 8 kms from his village to find an education. He was 12. He lived on the streets, doing odd jobs to earn money for food and schooling.
When we met back in June of 2009, he was one of the guides to the 800 year old carved rock churches of Lalibela. He accompanied me 45 km out of town to see an old church built, not carved, in a cave. It was as we left this extraordinary place that he said to me: “Please Sir, I want to go to University”.
As we travelled together, he told me a little more of this story. The night before we met, he had prayed that God would provide for him a way to move forward. To do his final year, he needed to study full time, and there was no way he could do that, because it would mean he couldn’t earn money for his food, school fees, etc. That’s where our story started.