BURAUEN, Leyte – He’s already 15, but Angelo has never been to the town center, never entered a classroom nor wore a pair of shoes. No wonder his dream is to grow old as a gardener.
Angelo was born crippled, preventing him from living normally. He’s been spending his entire life inside a makeshift hut and in a back garden near their house.
His mother, Evangeline, a widow, works as a house helper in the town center. His two brothers go to school, leaving him alone in a lonely yard during daytime.
“Mama beats me whenever she sees that I’m dirty. She slapped me on my face and kick my feet,” shared the innocent Angelo gesturing to some scars in his body.
When the mobile civil registration project reached their community, Marilyn Barrera, a relative and village officials asked community facilitators to process the civil registration of Angelo.
Angelo has been expressing his interest to go to school. This was the reason why his relatives decided to register him.
“I also want to go to school, in fact I already have paper, pencil and notebooks from non government organization,” Angelo shared with a shy smile, painted on his face.