The ‘Holidays’ of children who attend the Brother Manolo Centre in Cochabamba, Bolivia
In this time of vacations the door of the day centre Centro Hermano Manolo is closed. Work in the street continues because it is the most demanding time for working children and adolescents (NNATs).
There are a lot more young workers taking advantage of not having classes, resulting in competition for space on the sidewalk, until some adults “rent” a place in the threshold of a business to 50% of their profits! Longer periods on the street means more risks!
Today is the first day of the new school year in Bolivia and it is admirable to hear them proudly tell how they saved to buy the uniform, a girl who has worked in a tailor’s shop behind her house bought her school books, another has worked in a bakery and another has washed cars at Kilometre Eight. It’s the showery season here but still the work goes on.
Some have travelled to other cities, for example to work the wheat harvest outside of Potosí; another has gone to the barracks in Tarija to start military service. One of the seniors took advantage of the donation from CBS Middleton and Blarney St to participate in a course and is now a hairdresser and charges half price to small working children who want to cut their hair before school. Thanks to our friends the Centre offers “scholarships” these days, that is, the child pays a third of the cost of their copybooks for classes.
In the first days of the holidays a group of the bigger ones spent a weekend in a camp in Arani where they enjoyed the pure Andean nature at its best. The photo shows some tired people visiting the town of Arani on the way back.
The Brother Manolo Centre is a project of the Christian Brothers that assists children and adolescents who work and study; This project aims to prevent them from dropping out of school. This project also provides of scholarships to some kind of training to enter in the labor market and thus help their families when they finish school.
Brother Manolo Centre opens its doors thanks to the financial support of Misean Cara and Edmund Rice Development, as well as many generous people who continue to support us.