When I first came here to Bolivia, things were different, for me personally. But bit by bit things changed, for me, personally. A change I could feel and touch almost all the time, a change for my life. At the same time a dream started to grow, a dream about something. I didn't know exactly what it was, but last year something started to grow very fast. Ideas, projects, dreams, possibilities...It was all there, and I just couldn't ignore it, it was impossible to ignore because it was actually real and it gave me a whole lot of energy to keep on moving forward.
Last year I started to work all day and everyday on the street. I learned a lot about this work that I didn't have a clue about before, and the children gave me a lot of new ideas, ideas about myself, about them, about us... Ideas of something different, a new perspective.
Being with the children every single day I found that the children need something that's not available for them right now. The reality is that the children do not enter the street children homes, and do not leave the street through the original methods. The children demands that we try new methods. It's time to think new. Thinking new by listening to the children, by hearing what they say they really need because they know, they know what they need, and after a lot of time thinking and dreaming the idea of Smiles of the Street came to life. An organization that is willing to take the step out to the unknown and make the street children heard, seen and loved as the future of the world. Because that is what they are. Children with potentials greater than we can imagine.
Smiles of the Street was founded december 2009 and started working in Bolivia February 2010. Our project in Bolivia is dedicated to offer the street children alternatives to the life on the street, using resources that is already there, but that`s not available to the children living on the street. We base our work on the idea that by being able to offer the children different alternatives and activities, they will be able to better their life situation. We will work especially offering activities for the children that they demand, working together with organization that offer activities like football, cultural activities, education, and more, and at the same time coordinate with street children homes and schools. At all times it's the individual child who is in focus, and the child's wish to better his or her life situation. From there we work supporting the children on the way to a better life.
We are now starting up all the work here in Bolivia, it´s difficult to start a work like this, really difficult. I dedicate all of my time to this now, and I couldn't wish for anything else. Every day on the street, and every smile... It's all worth it.
Our Vision is that street children can be leaders of their own lives, and that they will be heard, seen and valued.
In order to reach for this vision we need your help. Everyone of you can help, and the children need it. By talking about them and making the people around you aware of who these children are, you can make a big difference. Start by interact with our facebook page: smilesofthestreet.com/facebook , and invite all of your friends. You can also talk about the street children in schools and youth clubs. The possibilities are there. Contact me for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Together we will make the street children heard, seen and loved worldwide!