When the boys are on the street, they are regularly chased, beaten, and even sometimes killed. They are treated terribly and as if they are disposable. It seems to be worse for the oldest boys, the ones we are trying to reach, because they are all seen as thieves. When the boys are younger, they can collect scrap metal and plastic to resell to recyclers. However, when they are older it becomes really shameful for them to do so. Even collecting scrap isn't the safest of jobs anymore. The boys are regularly caught and beaten even for that. There isn't really any safe space or thing for them to do these days.
A few months ago, I reached in the slums early in the evening. I just happened to be passing by and needed to drop something off to someone. There had been lots of chaos the week before and some pretty huge disagreements between some of the boys and the mechanics that work in the slum. A few minutes after I arrived, boys came running to me telling me their friend had been beaten and no one would let them take him to hospital.
I hurried to where it had happened and saw a crowd of about 50 people standing around and a boy laying in the middle, not moving. Without hesitation, I moved through the crowd to see if he could move or if he could hear me. An argument started because I was taking him regardless of what anyone said. I knew they would happily watch him lay there and die, and days later the officer in charge actually told me "good riddance, let him die" as he was in the hospital fighting for his life.
We finally got him to a nearby hospital, which started one of the craziest weeks of my life. It was evening by this time and the hospital was not well lit. He was confused, probably in excruciating pain, and every time someone touched him, he would fight them off. It made it impossible for the doctor to do the stitches. So he suggested we either take him to the national hospital, or bandage it and wait to morning. Chaos ensued and he was eventually taken to the national hospital on a police truck for his own safety. The people that started the job surrounded the hospital waiting to finish it.
When I arrived at the hospital the next morning, they hadn't done anything for him other than put a bandage on his head. When I found him, he was having seizures and no one was doing anything for him. I was asking for help and no one would do anything. I was terrified that he was going to die right before my eyes. I imagined having to tell the boys that another of their friends was killed, and I imagined the disaster that would happen after. I was frantic actually.
I was absolutely helpless. There was nothing I could do but pray. So I did. I begged God for a miracle and to not let him die. And I got my miracle. I see him every day now. He came home after a week in the hospital. It is still absolutely incredible to me that he was so close to death, but he is alive and well now. He will actually be starting vocational school soon. He wants to be an electrician.
The miracle came in the form of this petite woman completing her residency. I begged her for help and she jumped in. She didn't think about her safety or the fact that he was fighting and seizing so much she could have pricked herself with one of the many shots she had to give him. She got his seizures stopped so we could go for a CT scan. She answered my questions and was so kind. Soon, my panic and fear disappeared and even though he was in and out of awareness, I knew he was going to be fine. I had a calmness that I can't explain, other than God was there.
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18