20 November: In the farmacy for the children
On November 20, 1989, the Convention on the Rights of the Child was approved in New York. It is the most important and comprehensive international regulatory instrument for the promotion and protection of the rights of the child.
The Francesca Rava Foundation celebrated this date with a national initiative called "In farmacia per i bambini" that took place in almost 2000 pharmacies to promote awareness on children's right and collect pediatric medicines for almost 500 centers for displaced mothers and children in Italy, many of them coming from across the Mediterranean Sea after a perilous journey.
We want to share the story of Abdoulaye, a young Senegalese boy. As a child he escaped from his land and after years of travel, misadventures and wars he finds peace only when he reaches the Italian coast and reads a sign saying "welcome".
"Migrants", "foreigners", "clandestine". Expressions used by men to define other men, words that mark territorial and cultural boundaries, which generate and nurture differences. Migrants are often mention abstractly, in numerical terms: how many have arrived, how many survived the trip, how many did not make it. But when abstract conjectures are embodied in a true story, everything changes:
you stop thinking and you start to feel. If thought divides, feeling unites; so we all feel a little more similar, all simply human beings. The idea of telling the story of Abdoulaye stems from the intention to make known certain experiences, almost always dramatic and difficult for us even to be imagined, through the direct testimony of those who have experienced them on their own skin. To break down prejudices.
Abdoulaye comes from Senegal. When he was young, his father decided to entrust him to the family of a dear friend of his who lived in the city, to guarantee him the possibility of receiving an education. After a few years, he returned to the village with his family of origin. "In Africa we are forced to grow up fast" and soon Abdoulaye started to question himself about different things. He constantly asked questions that often turned out to be inconvenient and unwelcome. But the more he grew and became aware, the more he rebelled against the idea that someone should command and decide for him. So he left because he did not accept that system, he was not well and from there he could not help his mother as he wanted. He left for Libya, crossing Mali and Nigeria, where there was war. In the desert between Mali and Nigeria the rebels fired "You just have to pray to God and keep walking, hoping to survive". After months of travel he finally reaches Libya. He began to work and integrate (coming to Italy was not part of his plans, he hoped to be able to return home soon). In 2011, however, the war breaks out, and everything changes again ... "I was afraid of leaving the house, because there was a risk of being sent to fight forced to line up with the rebels or with Gaddafi. In case of refusal, a hand was cut or killed. " Abdoulaye arrives in Italy in 2011 at 16, attends school to learn the Italian language well and be able to integrate. His love for football allows him to meet many people who are still part of his life today. Today he lives in Caulonia (Calabria), he is a cultural mediator and acts as a link between the citizens and the boys within the project he is housed in. "From my experience I learned that life can present difficulties, but we must always learn from negative experiences looking for the positive side in every situation. Whatever happens, we must always continue to sow peace, without ever being overwhelmed by hatred and prejudices. "Attachments: