In an urban neighborhood in El Salvador, a little boy with a gapped-tooth smile named Rodrigo dreams of becoming a superhero.
But not so he can fly, become invisible or freeze his enemies.
He loves pretending he’s a superhero because every day he sees people who need one.
In a country where more than a third of the population lives in poverty, including Rodrigo, hungry bellies, leaky roofs and families struggling to send their kids to school and to get ahead are everyday realities.
“My dream is to be a superhero,” Rodrigo said. “To save and help people.”
In many ways, Rodrigo’s mom is a superhero. A single mother raising her son in a dangerous neighborhood, Silvia works hard to give him a better life. Concerned for his safety, she wakes Rodrigo early each morning and walks him past the gang-tagged buildings that line the streets of their community to a babysitter in a safer neighborhood. She then travels to work, spending long hours laundering, ironing and cleaning for her customers.
After work, with blistered hands and tired legs, Silvia picks up Rodrigo, and they return to their one-room sheet metal-roof house, filled with only the necessities: one bed, a kitchen and a small table and chair where Rodrigo sits to do his homework.
Silvia cooks dinner while talking to Rodrigo about his day. She helps him with his homework and encourages him to work hard in school.
If you ask Rodrigo what their greatest challenge is, he’ll tell you: “[For my mother to] take care of me and work.”
He’s smart and keenly aware of the great challenges his mother faces. She gives everything she has to keep him safe and fed, loving him well as she works for a better future for their family. But sometimes, her hard work just isn’t enough. This is the reality for all too many mothers around the world.
This Giving Tuesday, you can be a superhero for a boy like Rodrigo and his family. When you sponsor a child through Unbound, you help real people struggling against difficult odds. Your sponsorship has an immediate impact — helping kids like Rodrigo stay in school, funding microloans for businesses run by moms like Silvia, and more. You invest in individual ideas and initiative that change lives and entire communities.
Will you be a superhero this Giving Tuesday? Sponsor today and give life to Rodrigo’s dreams and so many others’ around the world.
Editor’s note: Since this blog was published, Rodrigo has found a sponsor. Click here to view other children waiting for sponsors.