After a year in which emergency aid is central, we hold a fundraiser in December to provide gifts and extras for the Casa children in the toughest situations. In February 2021 it will finally be time: the necessary papers (due to the current measures) have been completed and we have an enthusiastic photographer ready to go along to hand out the gifts!
We went to visit the kids of Estrellas de la Calle. This is a safe haven that provides day care and guidance to poor families and children who worked on the streets before the quarantine. Unfortunately, the place where these children are normally taken care of is now also closed. With an address list we decided to visit the kids at home. We go through the houses one by one. Our kids have grown and changed since the last time we saw them. A few months ago we were here to deliver food and other basic necessities. Now we are in the same living rooms with Lego, dolls, books and other toys. Thanks to the photographer, we can share the joy and gratitude on the faces of the children with our Amigos. They were already in a difficult situation before this challenging time, but these are small bright spots.
For us, on the other hand, they are also bittersweet visits. Due to the current quarantine measures, the families miss day care with meals and the children or their parents cannot work on the street. As a result, in two families, we found the children neglected and malnourished: moldy water in the kitchen, doors without locks (in neighborhoods where shooting incidents and prostitution are the order of the day) or trembling kids with lies about the absence of dad. The situations are so dangerous that we decide to call in child protection. Only they can intervene at this point.
Bittersweet visits… We are grateful for the toys we have distributed, we continue to fight for the well-being of the children and look forward to the moment when we can resume our regular activities!