In this story of Joy the name of this inspirational young man has been censored & changed out of respect for his privacy & future choice to share or not to share his testimony after growing to adulthood. In this story our featured young man will be referred to as “Billy”
From a young age, one thing has always remained true in Billy’s life: a desire for education. Found on the streets of Tororo, the aspirations he longed for seemed just out of reach. At the age of two, Billy and his mother were chased from their home by his father. Unable to provide for her son, Billy would remain at an orphanage until the age of 8. He then transferred out of this orphanage to live with his stepfather while his mother moved to South Sudan to look for work.
Although Billy was able to go to school from level P1-P6, the hope that seemed so close at hand was met with the tragedy of further abuse within the home. Like many other kids who make their way onto the street, the pain caused from home forced -in his mind - Billy to seek out better opportunities on his own.
After several years of facing the depths of the hunger and homelessness of street life , Billy had a desire to find his mother. In 2021, Billy began the walk to hopefully reunite with his family, and after a couple weeks of wandering, it finally came to be. His mother did her best to get him into school as soon as he arrived, but in the face of school fees and uniforms, the money was just not enough. He then chose to walk back to Tororo, because to him, the only means to provide for himself was to go back to the streets and sell metal scraps for the few dollars he could manage.
Despite the dangers and temptations that street kids face, Billy never lost sight of the importance of education. At Sanyu Rising’s first encounter with Billy, his intention was clear, ‘I want to go back to school’. Billy became a constant at reading and feeding programs each week, and by God’s grace, the opportunity arose for Billy to go to a boarding school completely paid for through Sanyu Rising Sponsorship. Despite the hardships Billy has walked through, he recognizes the provision of God and the power of the gospel. ‘God has helped me go back to school, and that is a big thing. ‘
At school, Billy’s favorite moments are spent playing football with his friends. His favorite subject is mathematics, and his passion to pursue engineering he now sees as a reality. Even in the big dreams of his own, his heart is still drawn to one day be able to support his mother and siblings through providing the means for food and school fees. Looking back on his years spent on the streets with other kids, he envisions a way for them to have an opportunity just like he was given. When asked what he would say to the street children right now, his response was, “Studying is a good thing. If someone wants to help you go back to school, always accept.’ When meeting Billy, a heart of indescribable joy is so clearly seen. There seems to be only one explanation for this transformation story, the abounding love experienced in Jesus Christ.