Caring Home 1A caring home, an education and love, where none existed before is needed today. Tomorrow may be too late… This is Pedro (name changed to protect the identity of the child). And yes, he’s sleeping at a roadside of a busy major street in Bacolod City, Philippines. From the shop owners in the surrounding area I learned that Pedro, now 14 y/o, has been roaming the streets since he was 8. Dishevelled, unclean and obviously uncared for, he is “adopted” by the shop owners by occasionally giving him some left over food. Pedro according to them is not an orphan. In fact they would often see his father come to him for money! How Pedro obtained the money he was giving his father is unclear to the people who know him, they guessed it must be from begging. On my way back from home to where I saw Pedro sleeping , to bring him breakfast, I saw two more children who were obviously much younger than Pedro. Like Pedro, they too looked dishevelled and unkempt. Upon befriending them I got to know that they were brothers, aged 6 and 8. Asked why they were out in the streets so early in the morning, they said the streets is actually their home since they were driven away from home by their mother because they were apparently “naughty”. Not surprisingly, they didn’t ask me for anything since they were quite shy when I approached them that it took them awhile to answer my questions. Actually they only started opening up to me when I’ve brought them breakfast as well. Thinking they were uncomfortable with my presence since they were not touching the food I brought them, I left them in a hurry. When I looked back, this is the picture I saw.  It turned out that the 2 young boys were Pedro’s brothers! And they actually were just waiting for me to go so they can wake their brother up to share a meal with him ????

Caring Home 2

Though the young boys’ spirit of solidarity was admirable,  the thought  that like their older brother they could  end up supporting their father with whatever money they get from their life on the streets, filled me with sadness.

 

Providing abused children like Pedro and his brothers, with a caring home, an education and love, where none existed before is the primary aim of Balay Dalangpan sg Kabataan. But us organisers cannot do it on our own, we need all the help we can get. We need YOU to help us. Today, tomorrow may be too late.