Fatherhood Around the World in 100 Words
Five dads from five countries across the globe share their personal stories of hope, strength and sacrifice for their children in 100 powerful words.
02 Sep, 2016
Somporn and Pidsinee, Thailand
When my wife died, I could think of nothing else. Wondering how it all happened. I was 23. How could one die so easily? How I prayed, every day, for my wife. Compassion helped me with food and milk for the baby. Raising Pidsinee has not been easy. If I were to do it by myself, I would never have made it on my own. My cousin got me a job at an elephant camp so I can support her. But it is far from Pidsinee. I miss her. I keep a photo of her with me all the time.
Gavino and Giovani, Guatemala
My son is the best thing on earth. When I was Giovani’s age—24—I already had six of my 10 children. But for my son it will be different. Since childhood I have known there was something different about him. I would tell my nine-year-old son, ‘I am sorry, boy, but I do not have enough money this month’. And he would answer, ‘Do not worry, Father’. Giovani’s baptism was my breaking point. I said to myself, it is not possible that my son is the good example of the family. This has to change. I’m going to change.
Sujon and Somapti, Bangladesh
When I had my second daughter, I was very angry and anxious. Because when Somapti will grow up, then I will have to pay big money as dowry for her marriage. I didn’t want to see her face. My wife was very distressed. But the Child Survival Program manager Manik talked to me so many times. I wondered at their love and affection for my daughter. I realised if these people who are not my family members could be so concerned for my daughter, then, as a father, I too must be caring about my child. Somapti is a blessing.
Kerry, Revando and Alvino, Indonesia
I want to be a father and a mother for my children for as long as I live. I never expected my wife would leave me and my children forever. I imagined her health would be normal again. But I was wrong. God had another plan. The hardest household chore is washing clothes; I'm not patient enough to do it properly. Since living as a single father, I work from home so I can still have time with my children. I always believe that God will help me and my children through every situation. I just need to trust Him.
Rogelio and Cosmer, Mexico
My grandparents, then my father, my mother, and I have been dedicated to harvesting coffee. And my sons and daughters, too, will be doing the same. There is nothing else to do. I didn’t really go to school. Maybe up to first or second grade at the maximum. My wife doesn’t know how to read or write. Cosmer is my youngest, the ‘Chunko’—the spoiled one. He gets the inheritance. He will own the house, but his greatest privilege will be learning the Word of God. It’s important for him to go to church. For him not to get lost.
By Zoe Noakes
Field reporting and photos by Jonathan L. Suwaratana, David Adhikary, Rebeca Amado, Vera Aurima, Ryan Johnson
The support of our generous sponsors and donors is helping Pidsinee, Somapti, Revando and Alvino, and Cosmer to receive the support they need to break the cycle of poverty and become the men and women their fathers dream they can be. (Giovani graduated from the Child Sponsorship Program and today is the first mechanical engineer in his community. His father couldn't be prouder.)