Democratic Republic of the Congo - Ishara's story, a boy in the street

16 August 2017

(ANS - Bukavu) - In their message of last May 13, the Bishops of Northern and Southern Kivu, members of the Provincial Episcopal Assembly of Bukavu, once again denounced: "The number of street children are growing at an alarming rate." The Salesians active in Bukavu, such as Fr Piero Gavioli, deal with this situation on a daily basis: not statistical data, but real children, innocent victims. On the example of their founder, the Children of Don Bosco still succeed in giving hope, dignity and opportunities for the future.

Ishara was born in 1998, the sixth of nine children, 6 males and 3 females. Two are already married, one is a single mom. His family lives in Ciriri, on the mountain, almost an hour and a half walk from the Don Bosco Center, in a house with mud walls which risk collapse. The father has abandoned the family, remarried and went looking for a job nobody knows where. The children are still in the charge of the mother who, to make a living, carries bags on her head or back, how she manages paying school fees for the three younger children.

Ishara tried to make ends meet on his own by selling toys on the street after school, but in the second year of junior high, an accident caused him to lose his small capital and the boy had to leave the school and spend entire days on the street.

Ishara is part of the first group of street boys who enrolled in literacy and vocational courses. After two months of school refresher courses, and following the orientation test, he was assigned to the Carpentry course. Bravely, he reached the end of the year's courses, received his certification and completed the 3-month internship. He is currently at work with an experienced carpenter who has opened a small neighborhood workshop.

Ishara already manages to do a lot of work and has started earning some money: he can buy clothes and contribute to the life of his family.

The Don Bosco Center continues to accompany him, teaching him how to manage his small income. Ishara is now beginning to think of a project for his future.



ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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