Little Dorika (Rwanda)

(All the children here are not all of Dorika’s siblings… some are neighbor kids out of school for Fall Break.)

“Little” in front of her name, Dorika, helps us to determine which of the many Dorika’s in the refugee community we are talking about. Our little Dorika is four years old. When we first met her and her family, we were asked for help getting them groceries by the other refugees in their neighborhood. Dorika has a large family with several brothers and a sister. They all live with their mom who is expecting another child in a few months. They also live with their 80 year old grandfather who has some serious health challenges. Dorika’s mother and grandfather struggle to keep food on the table, clothing on everyone’s backs and the number of children they have well attended to. They are happy to have had help recently getting their school-aged children into public schools. The children were all home today since it is Fall Break but were all wishing they were at school. They have not been in school before and are so excited to have the educational opportunity.

Dorika’s mother had a job but her pregnancy and taking care of the other children’s needs must come first in their family right now. Dorika’s mom seems a little stressed getting ready for another baby in the family and has requested our help with going through the remaining time in her pregnancy since she is new to Memphis. The Morning Center has agreed to help us with her prenatal care. (Thank you Jesus!) Sometimes American people will immediately judge a mom for having multiple children and struggling to provide for them. We (Asha’s Refuge) think this is sad because we know more about the personal situations and know that often it is more complicated and challenging for some women culturally than what most Americans can tolerate or understand. Without giving the details, Dorika’s mom has had some difficult relationships with the fathers of her children and needs reassurance, affirmation, acceptance and love.

The family has recently found a cheaper apartment and are hopeful to get to move into it soon. Dorika’s siblings are hoping they do not have to start a new school with the address change. Dorika is happy she will continue going to her Kindergarten Readiness classes at Asha’s Refuge while her grandfather goes to Americans Life and Language Classes.

When we first met Dorika, she was shy like her older sister. When we began playing with her, she started to speak to us in near perfect English! Her other siblings, mom and grandfather are amazed with how fast she has caught on to the English language. In her preschool class, she is a quick learner and runs to our vehicles eager to go to school each day. When it is time to leave, she clings to us wanting more time in class and more time with volunteer teachers (and our Executive Director, Jamie). Dorika loves to play underneath the group parachute, on the playground and with the educational toys at school. She always seems so healthy, smart and happy.

This past week, it is our understanding that Dorika was at church and had a strange seizure. She immediately went to the hospital and was watched closely for a few days. The doctors are unsure what caused the seizure and are unsure if this will continue for Dorika. They gave her medication and she will continue to be evaluated. She currently has no health insurance, but we are applying for insurance and hopeful that gets all approved. Please pray for Dorika! Please pray for her mom, siblings and grandfather. They could truly use our support. Kroger Cards would be helpful. Rice and dried beans would be helpful. Diapers and wipes would be helpful. Toiletries would be helpful. Of course there are obvious other needs too lengthy to write out because of the many people in this family. If you would like to help Asha’s Refuge help Dorika, her family and many other local refugees, please consider giving today.



Or mail checks to:

Asha’s Refuge

1035 Winchester Blvd., Suite A216

Collierville, TN. 38017


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