Saturday, November 20, 2004

IN LOVING MEMORY OF LEONARDO

Leonardo baking bread with our office assistant Fabiana, who is also his godchild.
Our dear friend and colleague Leonardo has been mercilessly slain by a jealous killer. Here he is seen with Fabiana and volunteer Harold baking bread.

Leonardo had an appetite for life and wanted to be part of everything. His killer thought indifferently.


It came as a great shock to us that Léo, (Leonardo Henrique Fontoura da Silva), had recently been shot dead at point blank. His unexpected death on November 8th. makes him yet another victim of the meaningless and far too common violence infecting our society.

Léo was a good musician and dancer who enjoyed playing in his own group "Estrela do Samba" together with other friends. His constant participation at nightspots was also a worrying concern for his mother, who preferred him home in the evenings due to the constant violence in our region.
Léo joined our programme as a teenager, as an active participant of our youth group. He also worked as office boy at the Hummingbird Activity Centre during the first year of its development. Eventually he found himself a fixed job, but continued practicing capoeira and dance at Hummingbird, always appearing here with a smile on his face.

His malicious killer had no other reasons for murdering him other than for his success, his joy over life and his girlfriend. Léo’s girlfriend witnessed the killing and he died in her presence after having attempted to scare off the killer only to receive yet another shot whilst the culprit directed shots at her too. As with the majority of such vicious actions, the author still roams freely on the streets in a society permeated with impunity.

Bread bakers at Hummingbird
Leonardo had many friends at Hummingbird, sharing joy over the activities offered there and he will be missed by all. Hopefully our actions will help diminish the violence, a threat to all of them.

Please help us to achieve our goals by making your contribution at the bottom of this page
Please consider making a donation to our Street Children's Memorial Fund at the bottom of this Blog. This fund sustains the programmes of the Hummingbird Activity Centre.

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Basic Scholarships – USD$40.00 - $50.00 per month

Aimed at impoverished younger children participating in our Street Migration Prevention Programme, normally aged between 11 and 14 years of age. This scholarship guarantees their active participation at the Hummingbird Activity Center alongside their essential attendance in public schools. The scholarship helps combat child labor in high-risk families by preventing these children becoming new victims. The scholarship is awarded to those in particularly difficult life situations where survival often becomes a more important factor than the child’s educational needs and mental and physical health. As a regular sponsor you will have the opportunity to stay in contact with your scholarship holder and to follow the changes your sponsorship will be making in this child's life.

Intermediate Scholarships - USD$60.00 - $70.00 per month

This youth scholarship is aimed at developing vocational interests in young people as they grow with our programme, guaranteeing their commitment and eventually leading them on towards an advanced scholarship. A firmer step towards their personal life project. As a regular sponsor you will have the opportunity to stay in contact with your scholarship holder and to follow the changes your sponsorship will be making in this young person's life.

Advanced Scholarship - USD$80.00 - $100.00 per month

Aimed to inspire older youth reach their potential in whatever area they are developing natural or acquired abilities in programmes at the Hummingbird Activity Centre. The scholarship can be used to cover costs for supplementary, external educational courses or for extra training sessions and materials. Such funds would otherwise be an impossible priority for them to obtain within an impoverished family situation. As a regular sponsor you will have the opportunity to stay in contact with your scholarship holder and to follow the changes your sponsorship will be making in this young person's life.

"THE RICH MUST LIVE MORE SIMPLY SO THAT THE POOR MAY SIMPLY LIVE." - Mahatma Gandhi