July and August in Mozambique are cold months and there are many homeless people in the capital Maputo. Among them are lots of children, but also elderly and mothers with babies or very young children.
The Community of Sant'Egidio visits the homeless on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays every week after evening prayer and on Sundays, and brings warm food. The Youth for Peace and the adults of the Community distribute about 800 meals a week.
Many young people on the street have come from other provinces of the country to look for work and a better future in the capital, yet it is difficult, so they end up sleeping rough on the streets, and earn their living by washing and parking cars or begging at traffic lights.
The Community's commitment has grown over the years, and some young people have been able to improve their situation. We usually start by helping them to get an identity document: some have lost it, others have never had it and so they have to register with Bravo! Some of them have found a job and thus emerged from life on the street.
Last week 300 winter kits containing blankets, woollen hats, socks, jumpers and soaps were distributed, with the help of the Portuguese Embassy, to help them survive the cold. It was a moment of great joy for all.