Trust

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Trust - South Africa, 2010. This is Thembani Mtethwa, but at that time, we called him Trust. He came to South Africa as an unaccompanied minor from Zimbabwe, and he is one of the nine boys that I have been following for nine years. Thembani lives on the street at the border near the town of Musina on the South African side. He chose to stay on the street rather than live at the shelter and attend school, as the local boys shelter at that time was nearly as rough as life at the border. He did ‘piece jobs’ or small errands or chores, for many years to earn money, and as he has gotten older and demonstrated his worth, he now works for clearing agents who assist truckers with crossing the border with their merchandise or cargo. He says he’d like to go back to Zimbabwe one day, but the promise of having a better life keeps him where the commerce is…even if he has to sleep outside on a pallet and endure mistreatment by his boss.