Hope, the Nigerian boy abandoned by his family because they thought he was a witch and rescued by Anja Ringgren Loven and her husband, has turned 3-years-old today. Since he was rescued by Anja and treated by tens of volunteers, the boy managed to put on some weight, and he’s now happy and eager to begin a whole new life.
Hope’s story is a tragic one. While on a trip to Nigeria to help abandoned children, Anja Ringgren Loven of Denmark and her husband spotted an emaciated boy on the street, begging for a bite to it. Ms. Loven declared that she could not describe what she felt when she saw Hope on the streets, naked, as thin as a skeleton, and with tears in his eyes.
Loven remembers getting down on her knees near the boy and helping him to drink her water. Appalled by the boy’s state, Anja and her husband took the boy to the local medical treatment, where he received treatment for his condition. Hope was emaciated, and, according to the doctors, his belly was filled with worms.
The saddest part of the story is that Hope was forced to beg for his daily food for at least eight months before Anja discovered him.
However as appalling, it might seem, this is regarded as a common practice in Nigeria by people who believe that their children might practice witchcraft. Thousands of children have been tortured, abandoned, and even murdered in cold blood by their families because they truly believed that they might be in league with the dark spirits.
Ms. Loven said that the reality is truly painful, and there’s not much anyone can do for these lost souls, except taking them to a place where they can be fed, clothed, and educated.
For this reason, Loven and her husband bought land in Nigeria, on which they erected an orphanage for children abandoned because their parents believe that they are practicing witchcraft.
The couple received a generous donation of $1 million for Hope and her orphanage. The woman said that she would use the money to ensure that Hope received the best medical treatment and to open a medical clinic on the land she bought with her husband.
After one year of love and care, Hope has gained some weight and is now anxiously waiting to begin school. We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavor, and we commend the Loven couple for their love and dedication to a praiseworthy cause.
Image source: Wikipedia