Hadiza with her children in Niamey, Niger

Hadiza Hama, 40, is a mother-of-seven living in Niger. Life in one of the world’s poorest countries became much harder after the death of her husband. Islamic Relief provided support through our orphans sponsorship scheme as well as access to micro-finance.

“Before my husband’s death, my family lived in good conditions,” said Hadiza, who lost her spouse a decade ago. “All our children had good quality education and health care. But now, I am the only breadwinner. It’s very difficult for me.

“I sell porridge. With Islamic Relief micro-credit, I have developed this small business,” she said, referring to a project which provides widowed women with opportunities to improve their income.

“I have increased my income, and together with the sponsorship money [I can] care for my seven children.”

Hadiza and her children live in a two-roomed house in Kirkissoye, Niamey. They have no electricity and running water at home. “It is not enough for us and our animals, and during the dry season it is very difficult for us to get water.

“This is how we live, by the support of God. However, I have improved our living conditions. We don’t have enough money, but we make do with what we have, thanks to God.”

Today, all of Hadiza’s school-age children are in education, and she works hard to help them to unlock the benefits of their schooling – and with it, the chance to escape poverty.

In 24 countries worldwide, Islamic Relief helps the families of orphaned children to meet their basic needs, through our orphan sponsorship scheme. Like Hadiza, many families also benefit from projects that give them the resources and skills to improve their lives.