My name is Ruth and my husband is Joshua Abu. We both come from Ado and Apa local government, Benue state, Nigeria. I got married when I was 19 and my husband was 36. Both my parents and my husband's parents are very poor. My husband was married before with two children. His first wife passed away. We had a very difficult beginning. My husband had no job and two children to feed when we married. Within two years of marriage, we had three children, including a set of twins. We decided to move to Abuja in search of a job.
Upon arriving in Abuja, luckily, my husband got a job in a hotel as a janitor. I started selling roasted yam. With this, we were able to take care of ourselves and our five children. When things were going well, we decided to make a small abode for ourselves in Karimo, a suburb of Abuja. Things were going well until disaster struck. The government decided to demolish all the houses in the area where we were staying. We thought it was just a rumour, so we didn't believe it until a bulldozer was at our door. The next day we were homeless, squatting on open land with no roof over our head. Some of our luggage got stolen in the process.
To top our grievances, my husband lost his job. I also became jobless because there was no one to sell roasted yam to in the area. We decided to move to Gwako village. We rented one small room there. Since this room could not house all of us, we sent our two oldest children back to their grandparents in the village.
Our twins were reaching school age; we couldn't even feed ourselves well, let alone send them to school. One Saturday, Mr. Simon of Eduvision International Services visited our house inquiring about our children and their schooling. I bluntly told him that he should forget about trying to get our children to school, because we could not afford it. He told us not to worry and that my husband should bring the children to school the next day. Now, our twins are enjoying free education in the Eduvision-run school in Gwako. It didn't stop there; my husband has also been getting occasional jobs in the school. This has been a help to us in sustaining ourselves.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Family International's project, Eduvsion, for caring for my family.
Originally Published in 2008.