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Healing Opens Doors to Trust

Ethiopian street boy suffers terrible burns, discovers compassion

Jonathan* is about 11 years old and lives on the streets of the Ethiopian city of Mekelle. After his mother died and his father remarried, he found himself no longer welcome in his family’s house.

He and his fellow street kids were drawn to the SIM youth center, but gaining the children’s trust was not easy.

Then one day, Jonathan approached a worker saying he had hurt his leg. He was suffering from severe burns and needed treatment immediately.

Many of the street boys shine shoes to earn money for food. They use kerosene to clean the shoes and, without realizing it, Jonathan had gotten some on his shorts. That evening someone lit a match to light a fire on the street, as the nights can be very cold. Daniel got too close and his shorts caught on fire.

A Plea for Help

Terrible blistering covered his leg from mid-thigh down past his knee. Despite being in terrible pain from such an awful injury, it wasn’t until the following afternoon that he asked for help.

SIM workers took Jonathan to the hospital and covered the cost of his treatment. Knowing he needed a safe, clean place to stay while he healed, the workers paid for a hotel room and got him meals.

When he returned to his friends on the streets, a remarkable thing happened. After they saw how Jonathan was cared for, he and several of his friends started to visit the youth center every day. SIM workers continued to change his bandages every other day and he continued to improve.

Hearts Opened to Hope

Less than three weeks after the accident, he could completely straighten out and bend his leg. Although he will have a terrible scar, he has recovered well enough to run and play soccer with his friends. There should be no other long-term consequences to his injury.

Jonathan and several of his fellow street boys have learned to trust the youth center more and are planning to take classes there.

Your generosity today reaches young street boys like Jonathan with compassion in the name of Jesus.

Please prayerfully consider giving a gift to further impact the kingdom of God.

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