Children and mothers at SOS Children's Village Ennerdale, south of Johannesburg, South Africa, are gearing up for Christmas. Nine-year-old Mary will join her SOS family singing Christmas songs on the evening before the birth of Christ...
Mary is looking forward to Christmas. Like all children in South Africa who celebrate this special time of the year she is especially looking forward to receiving a present from Father Christmas (Santa Claus), but her SOS mother is careful to remind her of the real meaning behind the celebration - Jesus' birth.
Mary will celebrate Christmas with her nine SOS brothers and sisters. A week or two before Christmas Day, the family will put up a Christmas tree and decorate it with baubles and ornaments. SOS mother Eunice will lovingly wrap some special presents to be put under the tree on Christmas Eve, ready to surprise her family when they wake on the morning of Christmas day. Mary is especially hoping for a bicycle to be delivered by 'Santa'. After opening their presents the family go to church. When they return they enjoy a feast of roast chicken, potatoes, vegetables and rice, with a special Christmas pudding and ice cream for dessert. In the afternoon the children play with their presents and each other. It is usually early to bed after the excitement of this special day.
Mary has not always enjoyed Christmas. She came from a vulnerable family background. However, she has grown to be a beautiful, friendly and charming young girl. She is always full of joy, laughter and smiles. She is responsible, respectful and listens to instructions. "Mary is such a cooperative girl and a pleasure to be around," said her SOS mother. "She has a good heart and is very generous and loving towards other children. Mary is loved and favoured by everyone who knows her." Her favourite hobbies are watching cartoons on TV, building puzzles and playing with her dolls. "My friends and I like to sing and dance. We have such fun," said Mary. Mary has progressed well at Mid-Ennerdale Primary School this year and she will complete grade three. Earlier this year, she enjoyed an outing with the school to the zoo. Mary's dream is to become a nurse so that she can help sick people.
If you would like to help a child like Mary have the chance of a family life and a happy childhood why not sponsor a child this Christmas?