Rusty the Recycler – Chapter 2

 


“I am completely blown away by a 5 year old boy who travels the streets collecting recyclables to buy food for his family and even more that he was the one who took responsibility to distribute food to others before he had some for himself!”


Both Cel and I were very impressed by 5 year old Rusty’s resolve to earn money to buy rice for his family and we decided to buy some food for him, his 14 siblings and parents.  We bought some food and made our way down to where we had seen Rusty disappear into the squatters area.  We left the food in the car and walked down the road and started asking people if they knew a 5 year old boy called Rusty.   No-one did and whilst we were talking to a lady about what we were doing a group of about 15 people, mostly kids had gathered around.  Eventually Cel pulled out her mobile phone started showing the pictures we had taken of Rusty the week before.  Just when we were about to move on one of the boys recognised the photo and said he would take us there and proceeded to march off into the narrow lane between the old tin dwellings.  We wended our way through people singing Kareoke, cooking dinner, playing cards and hanging out washing and eventually got to Rusty’s house.  By this time there were about 25 people following and after greeting Rusty we felt that it would be a bit unfair to just give the food to Rusty’s family so we decided to go back to town to get more food for the new congregation that had gathered.

About an hour later we returned with enough food to feed about 35, however by this time there must have been about 45 adults and kids milling around.  I must say that it was an interesting experience and we distributed the food as best we could.  What really amazed me is that whilst many of the kids were diving in grabbing at things to make sure they got their share, 5 year old Rusty was pulling food out of the bags and handing it to the other kids.   I am completely blown away by a 5 year old boy who travels the streets collecting recyclables to buy food for his family and even more that he was the one who took responsibility to distribute food to others before he had some for himself!  It is so fascinating how personalities can be so different at such a young age.