Kids at Risk – Ajijic

I’ve been visiting my friend Ginger in Ajijic, Mexico. It’s a beautiful community based along a 50 mile long lake. It’s about 30 minutes from Guadalajara and is the largest ex-pat American community in Mexico. It boosts 6,000 from the US and around 2,000 from Canada in a community of 15,000.

I couldn’t help but make a comment on one of our 5 journeys into the Tonola shopping district adjacent to Guadalajara as one of the 7 or 8 year holds jumped up on the tire of Ginger’s car to wash the windshield.

I said, “how sad they aren’t in school and have to be on the streets earning money to help their family survive.”

Ginger didn’t miss a beat, You have a problem with poverty, but who’s to say they’re not happy? What makes you think they aren’t content with their lives?”

“You might have a point, but I think at their age, they should be playing, in school and laughing; enjoying their childhood, not washing windows for a few centavos.” I had to monitor my tone as it struck an emotion chord with me.

“But you don’t know what their life is like.” Ginger challenged.

No, I don’t, but I don’t believe children should be responsible for their family’s welfare at 7 or 8 years old. It might be part of the system in all countries, but I will always find it reprehensible. There’s plenty of time for children to grow up and face the challenges of the world, but while they are children, their only role should be to enjoy life.

I don’t care what country it is, I abhor poverty and injustices. Each one of use can create a difference in the world, no matter how small it might be!