Emilia Epeti Miki, Share The Love

Date grant awarded: 2/5/2017

Emily Miki’s project Share The Love (#ShareTheLove) is a charity project by Denis Miki Foundation, a nonprofit organization that was created out of the need to empower rural and urban poor communities. As the Founder/CEO of the Foundation, she works to empower and give a meaningful life to Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) in the interior rural and urban poor communities of Cameroon. #ShareTheLove is designed to help orphans and vulnerable children, especially those orphaned by HIV/AIDS parents, to build their social and life skills needed to succeed in life and eventually escape their cycle of poverty by creating support groups for them called #ShareTheLove (STL) Groups.

In the Mbengwi Municipality there is just one orphanage, limiting the care programs for orphan children. These children grow up without parental guidance or support groups, where they can learn about their health, their importance and role in the community, hygiene and sanitation lessons and receive coaching and mentorship for an impactful life. They have no one to fight for their rights or speak up for them. An example is Miki, a 7-year-old HIV positive child of Njindom village in Mbengwi. Before he died, he had told Emily that since his health was weak, there were periods when the teachers told him not to come to school for fear of him infecting other children. At an age as early as that, stigmatization played a great role in bringing down his moral and in deteriorating his already failing health. These kids grow up without basic life needs, such as proper health care, running water, electricity, daily meals and parental guidance.

As members of the STL Groups, they are introduced to a wide variety of health, hygiene, nutrition, educational and skills acquisition programs, including leadership, beads making, internal decoration and culture. They receive HIV/AIDS education and care follow-up, and the two most needy cases will be registered for a Life Insurance/Economic Empowerment Scheme called Helping Hands International.