Ivan’s Story

Our Stories – Off the streets and back to school

Ivan’s Story

Ivan is 16 years old and is the second of four children. His father’s death and mother’s illness forced him on to the streets to help support his family.

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Shortly after his dad’s death, his mother developed cancer which progressed rapidly until she could no longer work.  Since his mother was the only surviving parent there was no one else to support them. Ivan and his older sibling started doing odd jobs to make ends meet and get food. He says life just became harder day by day. When Child Restoration Outreach (CRO) project met him he was carrying cans of water for local food kiosks at the bus park area, to earn money. With the support of the social workers, Ivan received help and counselling and supported his family psychosocial needs.

“I lost the hope of a bright future and I always had a lot of bitterness. I stayed out of school for 2 years. One bright morning, Child Restoration Outreach project met me. I was persuaded to come to the centre by the social workers who interviewed and counselled me. The social workers made a visit to my home and found my mother was in bad shape.

Even with these troubles, I was enrolled in the school transition class and after doing many assignments I caught up in academics for the lost years. After excelling in my primary school leaving results, I am now in senior two at Mbale senior secondary school. The social workers continued to visit my family often, to give psychosocial support to me, my mother and my siblings. My mother continued to struggle with cancer but later died. May her soul rest in peace.”

Ivan says that poverty in the home leads children into child labour on the streets. Life there is very tough physically and mentally. Emotionally, children who are on the streets have a lot of trauma, feel a lot of isolation, bitterness and are always withdrawn.

Ivan is now a peer mentor and helps other street children adjust life off the street. After his mother died, Ivan is living with his uncle but also receives support from the Child Restoration Outreach project to help with his scholastic fees. Ivan concludes “I now see a ray of light to become a doctor in future after my studies so that I can save the lives of vulnerable people”.

With ongoing scholastic support, he is now determined to complete school.

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Off the Streets

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Learn more about Street Child Education

Africa Educational Trust and the Child Restoration Outreach project helps address the reasons children end up on the street and give comprehensive support to get them and their families back on their feet.

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Mariam

shamim pic miniLeft destitute after her husband abandoned her, Mariam couldn’t make ends meet and her daughter ended up on the street homeless, but with our help, she’s back off the streets.

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