Connect with us

Inspiring

Extremely Starving Boy in Viral Photo Goes Through Incredible Transformation

Avatar

Posted

(

)

A A A
  • Charity worker Anja Ringgren Loven was shown kneeling down to give water to an emaciated toddler who was abandoned on the streets of Nigeria.
  • The boy was hospitalized and was in a critical condition for the first two weeks.
  • Despite the suffering he experienced early in life, Hope can now look at that famous photo with a smile.

It was a picture that can haunt one’s soul: charity worker Anja Ringgren Loven kneeling down to give water to an emaciated toddler who was abandoned on the streets of Nigeria because people consider him as a witch.

The boy looked to be on the throes of death, unlikely to survive the terrible condition that he was in.

Taken in January 2016, the image became famous worldwide, bringing focus on the harsh realities of abandoned children especially in the poorest of countries. But it also brought a story of hope, which was also the name given to the little boy no one thought would survive.

The boy Hope was said to be around six or seven years old when the photo was taken. Doctors believe that he could be as young as three years old when he was abandoned on the streets.

Anja said that the child “was in a terrible condition when we rescued him.” She is the founder of Land Of Hope, a non-profit organization. She said that Hope was seriously malnourished and had multiple diseases. He was hospitalized and was in a critical condition for the first two weeks.

She said that they didn’t know if the boy would survive or not.

Over the next four years, Hope was taken care of and given love and proper education by the organization.

Because of this, the boy’s life went through an incredible transformation.

“Hope is very healthy and loves to go to school. He is very intelligent and his passion is art and to be creative,” said Anja. “He is extremely talented at art and many of his paintings have even been sold. We call him our little Picasso.”

The boy has never met his parents. The organization was not able to find any of his relatives. Despite the suffering he experienced early in life, Hope can now look at that famous photo with a smile.

“He will often point at it and smile as if he is proud,” said Anja. “But I know it’s not about pride. Children are born with the ability to forgive.”

Hope was a product of his culture believing in superstitions. Misfortunes in families, such as illness, death, infertility, crop failure, and employment problems, are often accused of withcraft. The children of those families are turned into scapegoats and branded as witches.

“Superstition is caused by a lack of structural education, extreme poverty, religious fanaticism and corruption,” Anya said.

“No society can develop if its people are deprived of basic human rights such as access to education, health care, and social protection.”

She and her team have rescued more than 300 children, giving them shelter in the largest children’s centre in West Africa.

Among those children are young girls who have been sexually abused, tortured, and even buried alive.

View Comments

Follow On Facebook




Popular