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Oscar: Student, Footballer, Brother

Oscar, 10 years old; Oscar and his family fled from Buenaventura, a city on the Pacific Coast of Colombia, a few years ago when a family member was killed by an illegal armed group. They moved to Cali and then to Soacha, a shantytown outside the capital, Bogota. There they live in a makeshift house with no running water. Soacha is inhabited by thousands of other families who have fled the decades long violence in Colombia. Oscar goes to a local school where other displaced children study. His mom is the sole breadwinner and works as a hairdresser which allows her to keep the family in Soacha where she says it’s safer and they can move freely.

“I used to live in Buenaventura, Colombia. I liked living there because we always went to the beach on the weekends and my sister Darly and I would go into the mangroves and hunt for little crabs. Now we live in Soacha and there is no beach here, but that’s okay because I have many friends and I play football a lot. My friends call me Ronaldo, because I am so good at football! My mom is looking for a football club for me so that I can become a better football player. I have four footballs at home. These are the things that make me happy.”