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HOME LOCAL MIDEAST ASIA WORLD BUSINESS SPORT OPINION WRITERS
My dear adults
November 20, 2014
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My friend was slapped and abused because he was seen taking a piece of sweet from the fridge of his master’s home while the family was sleeping. His father was informed and also humiliated in front of a family friend. The master also threatened to inform the police. I am now 14. It happened three years ago. My friend now works for a shop and feels a lot freer. I am a cleaner in a bus and quite happy. My father is a painter and my mother works in a school as a kitchen assistant. We make enough money to survive.

I used to go to a school managed by the municipal corporation, but quit because my father couldn’t pay my fee and afford books. People keep saying about my future, but I am just happy to continue. I also know that I am not the only one suffering in the world.

You know what, I had a friend. He used to live in a hut along the railway track. He used to hawk peanuts on a train. One day he fell ill and died because there was no one to take him to hospital, which was 10 kilometres away. His father used to live in the village to which my friend belonged. He was hawking peanuts to contribute to his family in the village called Jognagar, 40 kilometres from the main city.

My stories are endless. The other day I saw two drunkards beating up a boy because he was found sleeping on a bench usually they sat on and drank. I love watching cricket. It is my dream to watch a match in a stadium. When I see other boys watching cricket on TV I feel like joining them. My bus owner’s son has promised me to buy me a match ticket. I know I am better off than a million children the world over.

I heard on TV that some of the world’s rich nations, including the United States, are allowing their children to suffer. Europe and the US were ranked the lowest in a report, which focused on health, education, and well-being in many rich countries. Some countries have a high degree of unhappiness among children and smaller living spaces for boys and girls. My bus owner’s grandmother (she occasionally gives me money to buy ice-creams) told me that I must thank God because children are really in bad shape in Africa and in some Asian countries. She told me that poverty and wars have left millions hungry. She told me in many countries levels of hunger, especially Africa, have killed people including children of very young age.

The TV showed many countries like Nepal, Tanzania, Cambodia, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh and Angola. I feel helpless and pray to God for all the children of the world. They are all my brothers and sisters.

The grandmother also told me about other countries. She told me that many kids did not get enough to eat in a country called Burundi. Bangladesh and India had underweight children. They were all under five. I also heard on TV that children were dying, like my friend, due to lack of treatment.
 

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