Chosen child sponsors Junior and Juliana grew up in Brazil and travelled very different pathways to finding new lives and love in Sydney.
As time passed life changed for Junior. He would go on to attend University and with his sisters help his mother to pay the bills. Life improved, “We stepped out of the poverty life to live a normal life,” says Junior, I never forget my Mum always said to me never give up, never give up on your dream.” Junior’s dream was to live in Australia.
Growing up in San Paolo, Juliana’s childhood was distinctly different to that of Junior’s. “It wasn’t hard for me; my journey was different because I grew up as an only child who had everything. But at the same time, I didn’t feel loved, I didn’t feel empowered. I didn’t feel I was enough or that I could do things like follow my dreams,” tells Juliana. Juliana was joined by a sister when she was 12 years old and is thankful that her parents gave her the best of everything including education. Juliana’s parents were protective, but when she decided to pursue her dream of moving to Australia, they supported her and her dream. It was then that Juliana started to look at life differently, “So, I was living in Australia and I could be grateful for them … my perspective changed from how I used to see them to how I see them today, because now I can be grateful. Now I know how hard they worked to support me.”
Junior and Juliana met each other in Australia through a shared passion for the gospel Jesus Christ and their commitment to helping others not only in their own community but also the world’s most vulnerable children through child sponsorship. Sadly familiar with the struggles of poverty and loneliness, they chose to make a difference and to help make dreams come true for other children. Signing up to be Chosen led them into a life-changing relationship with eight-year-old Musa from Nabukalu in Uganda. Musa handpicked Junior and Juliana at a celebratory choosing party, it is the first of many choices Musa will make through child sponsorship.
“I think we are so far away but at the same time we are so close now. To see his photo, it’s not just his hunger, thirst, pain, but it’s our pain, our hunger. We are one,” says Junior. ‘We are so happy to support him.”
“It’s the best feeling, we feel grateful for his life,” adds Juliana.
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