Lamar, is a 14 year old boy from a small province in Afghanistan. He is one of five children and from a very poor family and therefore his dreams of going to school were crushed early in life. In desperation, his father sadly became addicted. Lamar was also forced by his uncle to work long hours in a field caring for cattle.
One day, Lamar decided to run away from home. As he wandered the streets that night, he met a stranger who promised to find him a job. He trusted this stranger and agreed to travel with him to Kabul. Lamar began to dream of a good job and a better life in the “big city” of Kabul. On reaching Kabul, this stranger introduced Lamar to a house painter. The painter promised to train Lamar to become his apprentice. However, that night in his workshop the painter sexually abused Lamar. The abuse continued for weeks, and in addition, he was forced to work long hours painting homes with this man.
Eventually Lamar escaped and travelled alone to Jalalabad, a city in the east of Afghanistan. As time went by, he befriended a man who promised him a job in Pakistan. As he and this man approached the border of Pakistan, the police stopped and interrogated them. Lamar being a minor was taken to a government shelter for boys. After five months at this shelter, he was referred by the government agency to the Hagar’s FNM centre.
When Lamar first arrived at the FNM Home he was emotionally disturbed and showed signs of depression. After many sleepless nights, Lamar began to heal and was on the path to recovery. Being in a safe home and with the support of the staff and counsellor, Lamar began to build trust. He attended an accelerated learning school, was eager to be part of art classes, and actively participated in sports and other activities with the boys.
Our reintegration team was able with the help of the government agencies to locate his father in the province near Kabul. His father had just completed a six-month de-addiction program in a hospital, when he heard that his son was in FNM, Kabul. He travelled to Kabul and was overjoyed to see his son. Our team followed up with the father in the weeks ahead and confirmed with the help of the government agencies that his father was on the road to recovery. It was ensured that Lamar would be enrolled in school when he returned home.
His father then came once more to Kabul, this time to bring his son home. Both Lamar and his Father had tears of joy as they travelled back home together. Soon after his arrival, Lamar called our staff to share about the welcome back celebration with his family. His dream to have an education and be with his family are now becoming a reality.