Where Worms Thrive

I regularly hear snippets of gripping stories from children. When refugee children share these stories, it isn’t for the shock factor; they are merely articulating to me what happened to them in the matter-of-fact nature I might recount what I ate for breakfast yesterday. One afternoon, I was talking with a student about his large family. I told him how amazed I was that there were 7 kids in the family- 5 brothers and 2 sisters. He corrected me and told me he had 3 sisters, but one died in the refugee camp. His story continued, “My mother thought I was going to die, too, because I couldn’t stop throwing up worms.”

Most people think that death from famine comes only from a lack of food. Did you know that starvation also occurs because the food that is eaten is actually being consumed by intestinal parasites that rob their host of desperately needed calories and nutrition? This is a reality for thousands of families that live as refugees in camps. Water is contaminated, food and resources are scarce, and children suffer. Here’s another shocking fact for you- It only costs seven cents to rid a child of worms. *

Thankfully, today, his family is healthy and living in America. He loves his family, he is doing well in school, and he loves Jesus.

*If seven people gave up their daily coffee-stop for a year, all 111,000 refugees living in Thai camps could be treated for intestinal parasites.