Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Home free

For the past few weeks, I have been writing about the nine runaway boys Blue Dragon has been working with.

This afternoon, the last two of the nine have been reunited with their family. Their case was a particularly complex one: they are step brothers, and claimed that their father had been violently abusing them. We finally negotiated an agreement that they would live with an aunty - their father agreed, apparently buoyed by a fortune teller's recommendation, and the aunty was delighted to have the boys come to live with her.

The little boy I wrote about in my last blog, Tuan, doesn't want to live in an orphanage, even though we located a pretty good place for him to live. So he's taken to the streets again - clearly not a good outcome, but he is the one making the choices...

Our street has been very safe since Tet, when a spate of muggings had us working overtime to help our kids who were being robbed, sometimes at knife-point, for the few possessions they own.

Two days ago, however, another young man was hanging about the area to rob kids who came out of our building. The man, named Tien, had just been released from prison and apparently decided that robbing children was more lucrative than getting a job.

It didn't take us long to work out who he was, and where he lived... and last night we paid a visit to Tien's family. Today Tien has come to make amends and offer an apology (of sorts) - along with a promise never to do it again!

What a crazy life this is...


Anonymous said...

How bizarre is Vietnam. Can you imagine going around to the house of a guy who was mugging children in Australia, and having the perp come back the next morning to apologise!!

Buddhist with an attitude said...

When you said «pay a visit to Tien's house», did that visit involve hammers and kneecaps, or a horse's head, or anything like that? ;-)