A BOY CALLED ALBERTO
We are his parachute and safety net in rough storms
Alberto is ten years old. He lives with his father alone. His father drinks too much and that leaves Alberto in rather a delicate situation. His mother he does not know, she’s been in prison too long, since he was small, because she killed a pregnant woman. Alberto reckons she will spend thirty years there.
Alberto balances between many uncertainties with his father, who puts strict but inconsequent limitations on him, depending on his own state of mind. Things like not letting him go to school or participate in activities at Hummingbird. Alberto is still too young to go against his dad in situations like these, but the time will come as he grows.
It’s important we follow-up a kid like Alberto, who stands in danger of hitting the streets in a tough way. We are his parachute and safety net in rough storms, that’s important, it prevents him from becoming yet another street kid.
The mark on his throat was his drunk dad last night.
I captured this shot at the end of the afternoon, whilst Alberto was in my office explaining why he couldn't make it to school or Hummingbird today. He stood by my side and suddenly the sun was there, shining its golden light on his story, bringing some warmth into his otherwise rather cold life. That made me feel happy and now it has made him feel happy too, as he sits here by the side of my computer and sees that there are so many people in the world who care about him. His photo received 50 visits within the first 15 minutes of uploading to our gallery on Flickr and he couldn't believe that there were so many people who would care about him.
That's a real good reason to put a smile on his face.
Another good reason is that this photo represents our 1000th. image uploaded to our Flickr Photo Gallery, so now we’re smiling too.
Thanks for all the visits! More than 24.000 during the last four months
Preventive work is our most important investment today and like most preventive actions, it turns out much cheaper in the long run. Much cheaper than rescuing a kid once he’s lost to the streets. The Hummingbird Project attends 600 kids today, many of them in the same situation as Alberto. If we can save these kids from hitting the streets, we haven’t only done them a big favour; we have also saved the Brazilian society for another great big headache, on top of all the other headaches this country is suffering from.
If you visit our gallery you will see that there is a smile appearing on Alberto’s face. It is a sign of hope. Like most of the kids we work with, it represents their hope of better future.