That is the amount of time that Rodrigo* has been living on the streets. As a 13 year old, he was forced to leave everything familiar. His family, his school, his friends, and his neighborhood. He had to leave because staying meant death.
The truth is, El Salvador has the highest child homicide rate in the world. Teenage boys are most at risk. Rodrigo’s life was threatened.
Join us or die.
That is the message falling on too many young ears around El Salvador today. Be a criminal, or die at the hands of one. Kill, rob, extort or be a victim yourself. Rodrigo fled and found a new home. A 13 year old sleeping on a bed of gritty pavement, eating out of the garbage, looking for something to ease the pain and fear.
Sniffing glue, smoking pot, and then crack. Two years surrounded by hunger and fear…and drugs.
Join us or die.
Of fear, of hunger, of loneliness. So few choices, so many dangers for a boy alone on the streets. Two years stretch out like a long, dark road with no ending. Or at least no happy ending.
Rodrigo’s family is willing to help, to love, to find a way. But there are obstacles beyond just the safety and security. Rodrigo now has an addiction to fight because two years can be the beginning of a lifetime of struggle against powerful addictions. Those addictions have helped him survive the worst of it, they are not so easy to leave behind.
But what if he could leave those days behind? Rodrigo found a New Dawn, a new opportunity. He comes with a sweet smile, he has followed the rules, he is taking steps. His nightly return to the streets makes recovery difficult. There is much left to overcome in his life before he is healthy again.
Rodrigo and others need the opportunity to receive the full care that they need. They need a safe place to sleep at night, they need every tool possible to overcome the addictions that cling to them so fiercely.
Friends, would you consider joining us as we work with Rodrigo? Would you consider partnering with us? Together we can make the next two years of Rodrigo’s life the beginning of something wonderful and new. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info on Program Sponsorship for the children in the New Dawn program.
*Name has been changed.