- Thomas Ouma stepped up after his father and mother painfully separated nine years ago in 2014
- His father turned to alcohol because of depression, neglecting his fatherly responsibilities
- Ouma started taking care of his father and sick grandmother at five and managed to build his granny a hut
- The Siaya boy also does menial jobs and sells vegetables to pay for his school fees, as he’s in Class 8
A Class 8 student has been forced to divide his time between caring for his family and attending school.
Painful father-mother separation
The young man claimed he picked up the responsibility nine years ago following a separation between his father and mother.
Thomas Ouma’s mum left him, his father, and his sick grandmother, Regina Achieng Hela, taking four siblings with her when Ouma was five.
The kid had to take care of his two elders as, after the separation, his father sank into depression, which saw him waddle into alcoholism.
Fishing for food, stingy people
His drinking habits were so severe that he forgot the needs of his son and his sick mother at home.
“Eating was a problem. I would step out to look for food. Sometimes I would go fishing to get food. Other times I would beg for food, but others were stingy; they would not offer something to eat,” the 14-year-old told KENYA News Media.
Ouma also had to sell vegetables or work menial jobs to earn an income he would split.
A portion would go to cater for house needs, while another would be used to pay school fees.
Teenage boy’s aspirations
It was never enough, and at other times he would be sent back home for lack of clearing school fees arrears.
“I want to be a pilot when I grow up. If anyone can help me, I would appreciate it so I can help others,” Ouma pleaded.
He also noted he went to town for a year to work for her grandmother’s hut, where he sometimes went in to study.
Embu boy returns to school
In Embu, a 12-year-old boy who left school to care for his ailing grandmother returned to school.
According to a Good Samaritan, the little boy quit school to care for his sick granny and two siblings.
She disclosed she went to their home where they lived and found the granny whom they loved was physically weak and could not help herself.
The well-wisher said the granny could not raise herself and was very sick, but she took her to the hospital.
“I have brought you a child whom, if you look at is a leader, a captain. He broke his leg while fetching firewood. He made crutches by himself. I called a doctor to assess his health and bought him new crutches for mobility,” she said.