Eduardinho
Humor and noble ambition

“I will be a lawyer to defend people in need”

Eduardinho’s home is in a neighbourhood of Matola city, next to a street about to be paved. He lives with his parents and his older sister Marlene. He is always smiling and has a great sense of humour. When he comes back from school, he rests a little then goes back outside to play with his friends on the same side of the road. The other side is too difficult to reach at the moment.

Eduardinho with his mother
Eduardinho with his mother

When Maria-Celeste, our outreach worker, came knocking on their door last year, the picture was quite different. Now Eduardinho is a social and smiling boy, but at 11-years-old he couldn’t walk, he was still in diapers, and had a very hard time to talk. As his sister, who is very close to him, went to school, he spent most of his day watching TV.

Eduardinho with our outreach workers
Eduardinho with our outreach workers

Yoga, Eduardinho’s mum, used to bring him to physiotherapy sessions when he was a baby, but the hospital was far and many times the doctor would not show up. Discouraged, they gave up, thinking he would be better off at home.

Eduardinho on the school playground
Eduardinho on the school playground

Maria-Celeste convinced the family Eduardinho belonged in a school. His parents were worried he was too dependent, but Maria-Celeste referred them to a specialised school, and like Ansha he joined a school for children with specific learning needs, integrating into Mrs. Ricardina’s first grade class. Even if he has a hard time holding a pen, he enjoys school.

Eduardinho with Ansha on the playground
Eduardinho with Ansha on the playground

Within a year, Eduardinho not only learned to read and spell, but to stand, and most impressive of all, he is now walking. He became independent, stopped using diapers, and his speech is constantly improving. He now talks in Portuguese and Changana. When asked if he speaks English, he answers “oh my god, yes!” And even if that is the extent of it, it is just the beginning.

Eduardinho with Ansha on the playground
Eduardinho with Ansha on the playground

Eduardinho’s cheerfulness is contagious. He loves going to school where he has made many friends. “Especially Dionisia in third grade,” he says, slightly blushing... Currently, our outreach workers asked the school to diagnose his needs in speech and physiotherapy, in order to improve his writing, talking and walking skills. Skills he will need to reach his dream to one day become a lawyer. “A defence lawyer,” he says. And he already has the talent!

Eduardinho smiling in the classroom
Eduardinho smiling in the classroom

See their stories

Muzna
Filomena
Ester
Raul
Ansha