By Marie-Claire and Jean Baptiste Niyongabo
On Saturday 16th of January, the so called”Magnus kids”-in fact former streed kids supported by Amahoro Youth Club paid a visit to their former companions gathered on the verge of Lake Tanganyika.The sun is at Zenith when the team led by Yvette and Panafrica in charge of Magnus Kids commission in the midst of AYC get to the beach located near Bujumbura Port.
At the place we find Cynthia who has already brought together thirty seven street kids .They are on a circle waiting for the former companions.
The latter have done their best to carry the clothes collected by themselves and by AYC members.
The contact between the two groups becomes easy. Embraces, laughter, street jargon, words of hope here and thanking ones there without any apparent reason, that is the atmosphere at the moment.
Meanwhile, just two jokes are enough to feel how those children are tired .Tired because of the hard life characterized by so many nights they pass under the stars with empty stomach.
A strong emotion is easily seen in the group, some cannot forget the hard times they survived begging at the same beach, others think with nostalgia about the time they used to share any single bread they got with those whose providence embraced and now live decently at Magnus’, a Swede who lives in Burundi and welcomed to his house located in Rohero; around 15 children trained before at New Generation (local organization).
A prayer done on a circle and led by Sylvester gets the reason of the despair manifested on those street children faces.
Nevertheless, during the prayer, the attention is not really there. A child’ s strong voice rises from the group just to call God’s attention, or one can discover that the look is attached to the bags containing the gifts.
A watching eye! The Magnus’ Kids watch attentively and have advised in advance that we have to pay attention about our clothes pockets.
After the short time proper, it is now the moment to seek for the simple language to use in transmitting our message of peace and hope to those children who progressively lose their attention of listening to us and devote their lives to consuming drug.
When a brief speech that reveals the intention of that initiative delivered by Marie Claire Panafrica (the organizer of the activity) takes its end; Yvette takes turn to give additional information about the objectives of the club and invites those children to visit the club one day.
Now the time of sharing out comes, lemonade is distributed by Fiston the chief of the former street boys. He is the one who makes the law at the place. It is even under his permission that we could take some pictures of them. The lemonade and cake that accompanies it are quickly swallowed so that pants or shirt or T-Shirt can be given since it is what imports much to our street children.
Under the aegis of the team essentially composed by Magnus Kids, the distribution is successfully done.
Furthermore, Armand GIRAMAHORO, legal representative of AYC assures that AYC will soon share hope with street kids: ” Our plan is to develop a project which can involve all street kids in various activities aiming at technical and formal education, accompaniment, socialization, peace by peaceful means, nonuse of small arms, gender issues etc. This will help us building a better future of our country where people benefit of equal treatment and where there is peace and development. Our peer-to-peer counseling commission is working hardly on that project but before, we will have many opportunities to meet and share the best from our hearts. The contribution of every one is needed because peace is the every one’s business. We need to be the change we want to see!!”