13-year-old free after being forced to work unpaid for two and a half years
A 13-year-old boy who was forced to work for no pay for more than two years is now safe and at school.
Solomon’s* mum had been a domestic worker in the northern Amhara region of Ethiopia, but she lost her eyesight after giving birth to twins, and was then unable to work. With Solomon’s dad largely absent, the family reached desperation point.
Solomon ran away to find work to prevent them from starving. While sleeping rough, he was offered food, shelter, and work.
But during two years as a domestic worker and farm labourer, he was never paid. He bravely escaped, and managed to find his way home, but was lured away by another trafficker who promised him a job.
Again, Solomon was not paid. After six months, he escaped and then begged in the city to earn a little money for his family.
Hope for Justice’s outreach workers found Solomon, and explained how they could help him. They brought Solomon to one of our Lighthouses, where our expert team cared for him for four months.
We provided Solomon with counselling, catch-up lessons and life skills sessions. As he began to rediscover his confidence, Solomon sang songs for his new friends at the Lighthouse.
We also provided Solomon with the chance to take part in a small business course, before reuniting him with his mother for good. Now, Solomon is not only at school, but has set up his own shoe shining business after we provided a start-up grant.
We will continue to support Solomon and his family to ensure that they stay well.
*Name and image have been changed to protect individual’s identity