Why did a youngster who previously kept running away from Metta's guidance, refusing help and change, now often persuades the centre's children not to return to the streets? Why did he make such a change?
Panha is 17 years old this year. Although he is already a young man, he is still studying in Primary 6 and used to live on the streets before. One day, a friend invited him to participate in Metta's day care activities, then he knew us. "I also participated in the Metta's Christmas event after that. I remembered that there was a lot of food to eat. I was really happy," Panha said with a fresh memory. Grateful for these seemingly ordinary experiences, he began to think that there are choices in life, and the idea of leaving the street and staying at our centre was then born.
"Our family is very poor and our living environment is very bad. I am afraid that if I do not study, my life will be so hard in the future." Therefore, Panha went to live and study at Metta’s centre, but for him, accustomed to living freely on the street, it was a big challenge to adapt to regular life in the centre while concentrating on class and homework. That’s why Panha left the centre several times and returned to live on the street. "Because I liked playing video games very much, I could not use the Internet to play video games in the centre. Also, it was difficult to adapt to life in the centre, and I did not have close friends there, so I missed my friends on the street.” That’s how Panha lived in the centre on and off.
Grateful that he has overcome the temptation of living on the street, Panha now guides children in the centre who want to leave, using his own experience to empathise with those who are like what he once was. "I have deeply experienced and know that leaving the centre is a wrong decision, because living on the street will not have enough food to eat and cannot study, and life will be very difficult. Therefore, I encourage them to stay in the centre and study hard, so that they can have a better future for themselves and their families.”
We are glad to see such a change in Panha, believing that this is the wonderful work of God in transforming his life.