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CFCA stories

Woman weaves her way through fulfilling life

August 12, 2013

Humming happily, her fingers moving gracefully, Marie weaves colorful strands of synthetic material to make a beautiful basket.

Marie showing her finished basket
Marie shows her finished baskets. By using her talents, she is able to
help improve the quality of her life and earn money.

At 80 years young, she is happy to be part of the CFCA Hope for a Family program for sponsored elderly in Madagascar, an island nation off of Africa's southeastern coast.

"I am so happy because CFCA has become my family,” Marie said. "I had 11 children. Only six are remaining and they live far away from me. My husband passed away a long time ago.

"I am no longer sad. I have CFCA."

Marie has been weaving baskets for much of her life. When her husband died she needed a way to put food on the table for her children.

She learned the art of basket weaving and began selling her creations, which are made from recycled materials.

"I learned how to weave by looking at my neighbor who was so good at it," Marie recalled. "I would watch her for hours.

"I would then go back home and try putting in practice what I had seen her do. After a couple of months I became so good at it, and people complimented my work."

Marie's fingers fly as she continues with her story. She shares how she is determined to do all she can to make her life better.

Marie's hands while weaving a basket
Marie demonstrates the intricate process of weaving a basket. To her,
weaving baskets gives meaning to her life.

"I sell my baskets to people in my neighborhood," Marie said. "I make some money which complements what I get from my [CFCA] sponsor every month."

Marie receives monthly nutritional benefits through her CFCA sponsorship. She has also received much-needed household items such as bedding, a blanket and a pot to collect water.

While sponsorship benefits have helped improve the quality of her life, Marie feels a responsibility to use her talents to the fullest.

"I am old, but I am not worthless," she said. "God gave me this talent and I use it the best way I can. I do not want to fully be dependent on CFCA. I want to do something with these wrinkled hands.

"Weaving baskets makes me feel young again. It gives meaning to my life."

Something else that gives meaning to her life is her faith. She wanted a Bible and chose to receive one as part of her sponsorship benefits.

"I treasure it and I read it with my glasses on," Marie said. "I am so happy to have a sponsor who takes care of my needs, and he does not know me.

"I pray for him every day for God to bless him."

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