Elsie Delva with 5 month old Ali and 6-year-old Daphnee. Both girls lost their monthers in the January 12th earthquake

“When the earthquake happened my house fell on top of me, and I was
injured; my clavicle was crushed. So some days I don’t feel well enough to work. After the earthquake I was stuck under the rubble, from 5 o’clock in the afternoon, until 9 o’clock the next night when they pulled us out. After that I suffered a lot from my injuries. And I had lost everything. I had nothing at all.”

“Yet I had to take care of these children, both of them are orphans. Daphnee is 6, and I have been taking care of her for a long time. She was in the house with me when it collapsed, and I fell on top of her; she was hurt too.” She shows us a scar on the side of Daphnee’s
neck and cheek. Then she smiles at the little girl on her arm. Little Ali is 5 months old; her mother died 22 days after the earthquake so I have been taking care of her too.”

“So after the earthquake things were very difficult. Then Oxfam started the canteens, and we were able to eat every day for two months. That helped.

And since then, Oxfam also gave me money. With that money, I was able to repay some debt that I had so that I could feed the children, and then I bought some stock and opened this stall. It allows me to eat and to feed the children; feeding them is very expensive.” I ask her about the future. “I hope to be able to expand my business, that would make it much easier to live, and then I would be able to send the children to school.”